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/r^r 5^6^r 



f rf»t«4 It ^oha Starii. 



Si UinoUoHe eM rertu, die M pod par tout oe qui a'Mt pM TtrtMiu ; M 
•i eDe n'eit fu vettu. tf Mt pea d* cbow. 



VOL. I. 





Prof-G L.ZIut-'<rdg». 




' Strange is it, that our bloods 

Of colour, weight, and beat, poured aU toother, 
Would quite confound distinction, yet stand off 
In differences so mighty.*' 


It is a truth luuversally acknowledged^ that there 
is no pjussion so deeply rooted in hiunan nature aa 
that of pdde. Whether of self or of &nuly, of 
deeds done in our own bodies^ or deeds done in 
the bodies of those who lived hundreds of years 
before us*— all find some foundation on which to 
build their Tower of Babel. Even the dark uui- 
erartain ftiture becomes a bright fidd of promise to 
the eye of pride, which, like Banijuo^s bloody 
ghost, can smile even upon the dim perspective of 
posdmmous greatness. 

VOL. I. A 

2 THi: lKH£JiITAKC£. 

Ab the noblest attribute of man, fiunily pride 
had been dierished time immemorial by the noUe 
race of Rossville. Deep and incurable, there- 
fisre, was the wound inflicted on all its members 
by the marriage of the Honourable Thomas St 
Chdr, youngest son of the Earl of BossvUle, with 
the humble Miss Sarah Blai^, a beautiful girl of 
obscure origin and no fortune. In such an union 
there was every thing to exasperate, nothing to 
mollify the outraged feelings of the RossviDe &- 
mily, for youth and beau^ were all that Mrs 
St Clair had to oppose to pride and amlution. 
The usual ccmsequences, therefore, were such as 
always haire, and probably always will accompany 
unequal alBawceH, via. the displeasure of fiiends, 
the want of fortune, the world's dreadlaugh, and, 
in short, all the thousand natural ills that flesh is 
heir tbwhen it&ilsinitsall^ianGetoblood. Yet 
there are minds fitted to encounter and to over- 
come even these— minds possessed of diat inhe- 
rent nobility which r^ard honour as something 
more than a mere hereditary name, and which 
se^ the nobler distinction, open to all, in the ca- 
reer of some honourable profession. But Mr 
St Clair'^s mind was endowed with no sudi powers ; 


for he was a man of weak intellects and indolent 
hal»ts, with just enough of feeling to wish to 
screen himself from the poverty and contempt his 
marriage had brought upon him. After hanging 
on for some tune in hopes of a reconciliation with 
his family, and finding all attempts vain, he at 
length consented to banish himself and the ob- 
ject of their contumely to some remote quarter of 
the world, upon condition of receiving a suitable 
allowance so long as they should remain abroad 
The unfortunate pair, thus doomed ta unwilling 
exile, retired to France, where Mr St Claires 
mind soon settled into that state which acquires 
its name from the character of its possess^, and, 
according to that, is called fortitude, resignation, 
contentment, or stupidity. There, too, they soon 
sunk into that oblivion which is sometimes the 
poftion of the living as well as the dead. His £eu 
therms death, which happened some years after, 
made no alteration in his circumstances. The 
patrimony to which he expected to succeed was 
settled on his children, should he have any,* and 
a slender life annuity was his only portion. 

The natural wish of every human being, the 
weakest as well as the wisest, seems to be, to leave 


some memorial of themselves to posterity-^^ome- 
thing, if not to tell how their fathers thoi:^ht or 
fought, at least to show how they talked or waUs> 
ed. This wish Mr and Mrs St Clair possessed in 
common with others ; but year after year passed 
away^ and it still remained ungratified^ while 
every year it became a still stronger sentiment, aa 
death seemed gradually clearing the>way to the 
succession. At the time of his marriage Mr St 
Chur had been the youngest of five sons ; but 
three of his brothers had fallen victims to war or 
pestilence, and there now only remamed the pre« 
sent Earl and himself, both alike childless. 

At length, when hope was ahnost extinct, Mrs 
St Clair announced herself to be in the way of be- 
coming a mother, and the emigrants resolved upon 
returning to their native land, that their child 
might there first see the light. Previous to tak< 
ing this step however, the important intelligence 
was communicated to Lord Rossville, and also 
thm intention of immediately proceeding to Scot* 
land, if agreeable to him ; at the same time ex- 
pressing a wish, that he would &vour them with 
his advice and opinion, ad they would be entirely 
guided by him in their plans. 


Lord Riq8«ville was a man who liked to be con^.^ 
salted, ,aml to oyertum every plan which he him^ 
self had not arranged ; and as Mr St Clair had 
cpoken of taking shipping from Bourdeaux, where 
they then were, and going by sea to Scotland, 
Lord Rossville in his answer expressed his de- 
cided disapprobation of such a scheme, in Mrs 
St Clab'^s dtuation, and in stormy winter weather. 
But he enclosed a route by way of Paris, which 
he had made out for them with his own hand, 
and directed them, upon their arrival there, to 
signify the same to him, and there to remain un- 
til he had resolved upon what was next to be 
done, as he had by no means made up his mind 
as to the propriety, or at least the necessity, of 
their returning to Scotland. The packet also con- 
tained an order for a sum of m<mey, and letters to 
some friends of his own at Paris, who would be of 
service to Mrs St Clair. So tax all was kind and 
conciliating, and the exiles, after much delay, set 
forth upon their journey, according to the ruleis 
prescribed by the Earl— but, within a day's jour- 
ney of Paris, Mrs St Clair was taken prematurely 
ill, and there, at an obscure village, gave birth 
to a daughter, which, as Mr St Clair sensibly re- 


marked, though not so good as a boy, was yet 
better than nothing at all. As the Salique kw 
was not in force in the Rossville family, the sex 
of the child, was indeed, a matter of little conse- 
quence, save in the eyes of such as are sturdy 
sticklers for man'^s supremacy. Its health and 
strength were therefore the chief objects of con- 
sideration, and, although bom in the seventh 
month, it was a remarkably fine thriving baby, 
which Mrs St Clair, contrary to the common 
practice of mothers, ascribed entirely to the ex- 
cellence of its nurse. 

They had been fortunate enough to meet with 
a woman of a superior class, who, having recent- 
ly lost her husband and her own infant, had 
readily adopted thia one, and as readily transfer- 
red to it that abundant stock of love and tender- 
ness, which those dealers in th& milk of human 
kindness, always have so freely to bestow on their 
nursling for the time. Mrs St Claires recovery 
was tedious, and her general health she declared 
to be so much impaired, that she could not think 
t)f encountering the severity of a northern cli- 
mate. Instead of posecuting their journey 
therefore, they retired to the south of France, 


and, after moving about for some time, finally 
settled there. This was not what the Earl had 
intended, for, although pride still opposed his 
brother^s return to Scotland, he had, at the same 
time, wished to have the family somewhere with- 
in the sphere of his observation and control, — 
the more esjpeciaUy, as having lately separated 
from his lady, his brother'^s child might now be 
regarded as presumptive heiress to the family ho- 
nours. He had purposed, and, indeed, pressed 
to have the little Gertrude transmitted to him, 
that she might have the advantage of being 
trained up under his own eye, but to this Mrs 
St Clair would not consent. She declared, in 
the most polite but decided manner, her deter"- 
mination never to pfrt with her child, but pro- 
mised that, as soon as her health was sufficiently 
re-established, they would return to Britain, and 
that Lord RossviUe should have the direction 
and superintendence, if he pleased, of the young 
heiresses education. But some obstacle, teal or 
pretended, always arose to prevent the accom- 
plishment of this plan, tiU at length, Mr St Clair 
was struck with a palsy, which rendered it impos- 
sible for him to be removed. Dead to aU the 


purposes of life, he lingered on for several years^ 
one of those melancholy mementos, who, with a 
human voice and human shape, have survived 
every thing human besides* 

At length death didmed him as his own, and 
the widow lost no time in announcing the event 
to the Earl, and in craving his advice and pro* 
tection for herself and daughter. A very polite, 
though long-winded, reply was received from Lord 
RosBville, in which he directed that Mrs and 
Miss St Clair should immediately repair to Rosier 
ville Castle, there to remain until he should have 
'time and opportunity fiilly to digest the plans he 
had formed for the pupillage of his niece. This 
invitation was too advantageous to be reAised, 
evQi although the term^ in which it was couched 
were not very alluring either to the mother or 
daughter. With a mixture, therefore, of plea-' 
sure and regret, they hastened to exchange the 
gay vineyards, and bright suns of France,for tlse 
bleak hills and frowning skies of Scotland* 



Hope well to have, hate not past thought ; 
For cruel storms fair calms haye brought : 
After sharp lowers the sun shines fair, 
Hope oome8 Hke?m afrer despair. 

RicHA&B Alison. 

Mahit years had elapsed since Mrs St Cliir 
had 1^ her natiye land, and those who had known 
her then could scarcely have recognised her now,, 
so completely had the tout ensemble changed itB 
dumicter. The blo<»ning hoyden, with her awiD- 
ward habits, and provincial dialect, had been 
graduatty transformed into the beautiM woman, 
gracefiil in her movements, and polished, though 
elaborate in her manners. Though now long 
past her meridian, she was stiU handsome, and to 
ttiperfidud observers could be captivating; but 
the change' Was merely outward, proceeding ISpom 
no innate delicacy of thought or ennobling prin- 
ciple of action. It was solely the result of nice 
tact, knowledge of the world, and long intercourse 


with foreigners. The mind remained the same, 
although the matter had been modified. 

In her early days her pride and ambition had 
been excited, by making what was considered a 
splendid alliance^ and it was not till her imder- 
standing was thoroughly ripened, that she made 
the mortifying discoYcry, that high birth, when 
coupled with personal insignificance, adds no 
more to real distinction than a flaming sign does 
to an ill kept inn. It was this disappointment, 
which, operating on a naturally proud and vio- 
.lent temper, had brought into play all the worst 
qualities of her naturef, and made her look upon 
the world as indeed a stage, where all the men 
and women were merely placers. To act a grand 
and conspicuous part, and r^ain the station her 
husband'^s pusillanimity had lost, was therefore 
now her sole aim. 

It rarely happens, that one artificial mind can 
succeed in forming another — ^we seldom imitate 
what we do not love. There is something in hu^ 
man nature which recoils firom an artificial cha- 
racter eyen more than from a faulty one, and 
where the attempt fails, the revulsion generally 
produces a character of a totally difierent stamp. 

CHAPTER n. 11 

Mrs St Clftir had spared no pains to render her 
daughter as great an adept in dissimuktion as she 
was herself; bat all her endeavours had proved 
unsuccessfol, and Miss St Clair remained petty 
much as nature had formed her— « mixture of 
wheat and tares, flowers and weeds. There ex- 
isted no sort of sympathy or congeniality of mind 
between the mother and daughters-there seemed 
little even of that natural affection which often 
supplies the want of kindred feeling, or similar 
tastes, and which serves to bind together, hearts 
which no human process ever could have brought 
to amalgamate. Without any point of resem- 
blance in their characters or ideas, there was con- 
sequently little interchange of thought, and when 
Gertrude did address her mother, it was more 
from the overflowings of an open heart and buoy- 
ant spirits ^than from any reciprocity of feeling. 

^^ How I wish I had Prince Houssain'^s glass,^ 
exclaimed she, as they drew n^ar the borders of 
Scotland, ^^ that I might take a peep at the peo- 
pie I am going among — a single glance would 
suflice to give me some idea of them, or, at least, 
to show whether they !are the sort of persons it 
win be possible for me to love."" 


.^^ You have fonned very high and someidial: 
fyresumptuous ideas of your own powers of diseri* 
mination, it seems,^ said Mrs St Clair with a 
disdainful smile; ^^ but I should humbly conceive 
that my knowledge and experience might prove 
ahnost as useM as your own observations ot the- 
ories are likely to do.'' 

^^ I beg your pardon^ mama, but I did not 
know you had been acquainted with the RossviUe 


•< I am not personally acquainted with any of 
them — I never was — I never would have been, 
but fin* you — It is upon your account I now stoop 
to a reconciliation, which otherwise I would have 
spumed as I have been spumed.'' She spoke 
irith vehemence, then in a cahner t<me proceed- 
ed : "It is natural that you shoold wish to know 
something of the relations with whom you are 
henceforth to associate, since there is nothing 
more desirable than a previous knowledge of those 
whom it is necessary we should please. It is only 
from report I can speak of the Bossville family, 
but even from report we may form a tolerably ac^ 
curate idea of people's general character. Report 
then says, that Lord RossviUe is an obstbatc, 


tiroublesome) tiresome, wdl4)eliayed man ; that his 
sister, Lady Betty, who resides with him, is a 
harmless, dull, iaquisitiye old woman ; then there 
are nephews, sister^s sons, to one of whom you are 
probably destined ; there is Mr Delmonr, a weak, 
formal parliamentary drudge, scm of Lord Some- 
body Delmour, and nephew to the Duke of Bur-* 
lington, and his brother, Colonel Delmour, a fa- 
shionable unprincipled gamester ; and Mr Lynd* 
say, a sort of quakerish, methodistical, sombre 
person, all, of course, brimfiil of pride and preju- 
dice. Nevertheless, beware how you contradict 
prejudices, even knowing them to be such, for the 
generality of people are much more tenacious of 
their prejudices than of any thing belonging to 
them ; and should you hear them run out in rap- 
tures at such a prospect as this,^ pointing to the 
long bleak line of Scottish coast, ^^ even this too^ 
you must admire ; even this cold shrubless tract of 
bare earth and stone walls, and yon dark stormy 
sea, you will perhaps be told, (and you must as- 
sent,) are fairer than the lilied fields and limpid 
waters of Languedoc.^ 

Miss St Clair remained silent for a few mo* 
ments contemplating the scene before her ; at last 


she saidy ^^ Indeed, mama, I do think there is 
something fine in such a scene as this, although 
I can scarcely tell in what the chann consists, or 
why it should be more deeply felt than scenes of 
greater beauty and grandeur ; but there seems to 
me something so simple and majestic in such an 
expanse of mere earth and water, that I feel as if 
I were looking on nature, at the beginning of the 
creation, when only the sea^ and the dry land had 
been formed.'^ 

^' Rather after the fall, methinks,^ said Mrs 
St Clair with a bitter smile, as she drew her cloak 
round her, ^^ at least, I feel at present much 
more as if I had been expelled from Paradise, 
than as if I were entering it."^ 

The scene was indeed a dreary one, though 
calculated to excite emotions, in the mind true to 
nature in all her varied aspects ; and more espe- 
cially in the youthfid heart, where noYclty alone 
possesses a charm sufficient to call forth its ad- 
miration. The dark lead-coloured ocean lay 
stretched before them ; its dreary expanse con- 
cealed by lowering clouds, while the seap-fowl cla- 
mouring in crowds to the shore, announced the 
coming storm. The yet unclothed fields were 


black with crows, whose discordant cries, mingled 
with the heavy monotonous sound of the waves, 
as they advanced with sullen roar, and broke with- 
idle splash. A thick mist was gradually spread- 
ii^ over every object — an indescribable shivering 
was felt by every human thing which had bones 
and sldn to feel — ^in short, it was an east wind ; 
and the efiPect of an east wind upon the east coast 
of Scotland may have been experienced, but can- 
not be described. 

<' This is dreadful !"" exclauned Mrs St Clair, 
as her teeth chattered in her head, and her skin 
began to rise into what is vulgarly termed goose- 

" You do look ill, mama — ^you are quite a 
pale blue, and I certainly feel as I never did be- 
fore v;^ and Miss St Clair pulled up the windows^ 
and wrapped her roquelawre still closer. The 
French valet and abigail, who sat on the dicky, 
looked round with piti&l faces, as though to ask,^ 
" Qu'est^ce que cela f^ Even the postilion seem- 
ed affected in the same manner, for, stopping his 
horses,he drewforth apondepusmany-capedgreat* 
coat, and buttoning it up to his nose, with a look that 
bade defiance to the weather, hepiursued his route. 


The air grew colder and odder*— the mist became 
thicker and thicker — ^the shrieks of the seap-fowl 
louder and louder — till a trementlous hail shower 
burst forth, and dashed with threatening violence 
against the windows of the carriage. The unt- 
daunted driver was compelled to b^id his purple 
fiice beneath its pitiless pelting, while he urged 
his horses as if to escape from ite influence. 

^^ This is Scotland, and this is the month of 
May !*" exclaimed Mrs St Clair with a groan, as 
she looked on the whitened fields, and her thoughts 
recurred to the smiling skies and balmy vernal 
airs of Languedoc. 

" Scotland has given us rather a rude welcome, 
I must confess,^ said her daughter ; ^^ but, hap- 
pily, I am not superstitious; and, see, itisbegin-^ 
ning to smile upon us abeady.^ 

In a few minutes the clouds rolled away— ^the 
sun burst forth in all his warmth and brilliancy 
—the tender wheat glittered in the moisture-** 
the lark flew exulting aloft;.— the pea-fowl spread 
their white wings, and skimmed over the blue 
waters — ^the postilion slackened his pace, and put 
off his great-coat: such is Scotland's varying 
dime-— such its varying scenery ! 

CHAPTER in. 17 


** My father's house ! 

Send TM not thence 

DishoootirM, but to vealth, to greatness Tais^d.** 


It was on a loVely evening that the travellers 
reached their destination hear the western coast of 
Scotland. The air was soft, and the setting sun 
shed his purple light on the mountains which 
fimned the back*ground of the Roasville domains. 
The approach wound along the side of a river, 
which possessed all the characteristic variety of a 
Scottish stream— now gliding silently along, or 
seeming to stand motionless in the crystal depth 
of sastkB shaded pool-— now chafing and gurgling, 
with lulling sound, over its pebbly bed — ^while 
Its steep banks jn^sented no less changing features. 
In some plaees they were covered witi wood) now 
in the first tintsof spring — the formal poplar'^spale 
hue, and the fringed larches tender green min- 

VOL. I. B 


gling with the red seared leaf of the oak, and the 
brown opening bud of the sycamore. In otherd, 
grey rocks peeped from amidst the lichens and 
creeping plants which covered them as with a gar* 
ment of many colours, and the wild rose decked 
them with its transient blossoms. 

• Farther on the banks became less precipitous, 
and gradually sunk into a gentle slope, covered 
with smooth green turf, and sprinkled with trees 
of noble size. The only sounds that mingled 
with the rush of the stream were the rich frill 
song of the blackbird, the plaintive murmur of the 
wood pigeon, and the abrupt, but not unmusical, 
note of the cuckoo. Gertrude gazed with ecstasy 
on all around, and her heart swelled with delight 
as she thought, this fair scene she was destined 
to inherit ; and a vague poetical feeling of love 
and gratitude to Heaven caused her to raise her 
eyes, swimming in tearfrd raptiure, to the Giver 
of all good. But it was merely the overflowing 
of a young, enraptured, and enthusiastic mind ; no 
deeper principle was felt or understood — ^no trem« 
bling miidgled with her joy — ^no dark friture cast 
its shadow on the mirror imagination presented to 
her, but visions of pomp and power, and wealth 


and grandeur— visions of earthly blissh^-swam be- 
fore those eyes which yiet were raised from earth 
to Heaven. She was roused from her reverie 
by a deep sigh, or rather groan, from her mother, 
who leant back in the carriage, seemmgly over^ 
come by some painfid sensation either of mind or 
body. Miss St Clair was accustomed to hear 
her mother sigh, and even groan, upon very 
slight occasions, sometimes upon no occasion at 
all ; but, at present, there was something that be* 
tokened an intensity of suffering too sincere for 

^' You are ill, mama r exclaimed she in terror, 
as she looked oii her mother^s pale and agitated 

It was some moments ere Mrs St Clair could 
find voice to answer—- but at length, in much emo« 
tion, she said,*- 

*^ Is it surprising that I sho«dd feel, at approacbi- 
ing that house from which my husband and my-i 
self were exiled— nay, were even denied an en- 
trance ? Can you imagine that I should be un- 
moved at the thoughts of beholding that family 
by whom we were rendered outcasts, and whom I 
have only known as my bitterest enemies P'' 


Mrs St Claires voice and her colour both rose 
as she enumerated her injuries. 

^^ Oh ! mama, do not at such a time suffer your 
mind to dwell upon those painfiil recollections ; 
it is natural that melancholy thoughts should sug- 
gest themselves; but ah ! there is the cas- 

tlev^ cried the young heiress, fosrgetting all her 
mother^s wrongs as the stately mansion now burst 
upon their view ; and again her heart exulted atf 
she looked on its lofty turrets and long range oi 
arched windows ghttering in the golden rays of 
the setting sun. In another moment they found 
themselves at the entrance; a train of richly 
liveried servants were stationed to receive them. 
Mrs St Claires agitation increased — <she stopped 
and leant upon her daughter, who feared she 
would have fainted; but mddng an efibrt, she 
recovered her self-possession, and feUowing the 
servant, who led the way to the presence of his 
Lord, she gracefiilly presented her daughter to 
him, saying, 

" To your Lorddiip^s generous protection I 
commit my fatherless child.^^ 

Lord Rossville was a bulky, portentous.^looking 
person, with nothing marked in his physiognomy 



except a pair dP very black elevated eyebrows, 
which gave an unvarying expression of solemn as- 
tonishment to his countenance. He had a husky 
v<ttce, and a very tedious elocution. He was 
some little time of preparing an answ» to this 
address, but at last he replied,— 

^^ I shall, rest assured, Madam, make a pdnt 
of fidfilUng, to the utmost c^ my power and a1^- 
^ties, the highly important duties of the parental 

He then saluted his sister-in-law and niece^ 
and taking a hand of each, led th^n to a tall thin 
grey old woman, with a long inquisitive-looking 
nose, whom be named as Lady Betty St Clair. 

Lady Betty rose from her seat with that sort 
of deliberate bustle which generally attends the 
rising up and the sitting down of old ladies, and 
may be intended to show that it is not an every- 
day affair with th^n, to practise such condescen- 
sion. Having taken off her spectacles. Lady 
Betty carefully deposited them within a large 
work-basket, out of which protruded a dger's 
head in worsted work, and a volume of a novel. 
She next lifted a cambric handkerchief from off a 
fat sleepy lap-dog which lay up^ her knees, and 


deposited it on a cushion at her feet. She then 
put aside a small fly table, which stood before 
her as a sort of out-^ork, and thus freed firom all 
impediments, welcomed her guests, and after re- 
garding them with looks only expressive of stupid 
curiosity, she motioned to them to be seated, and 
replaced herself with even greater commotion 
than she had risen up. Such a reception was not 
calculated to caU forth feelings of the most plea- 
surable kind, and Gertrude felt chilled at man* 
ners so difiPerent from the bland courtesy to which 
she had been accustomed, and her heart sunk at 
the thoughts of being domesticated with people 
who appeared so dull and unpleasing. The very 
apartment seemed to partake of the character of 
its inmates ; it had neither the solid magnificence 
of ancient times, nor the elegant luxury of the 
present age; neither the grotesque ornaments 
of antiquity, nor the amusing litter of fashion-' 
able baubles for the eye to have recoiurse to. 
Lady Betty^s huge work-basket was the only in^ 
dication that the apartment was inhabited— -ap 
air of stifl* propriety-*-of . splendid discomfort, 
reigned throughout. 

The usual^ and more than the usual questions 


were put by the Earl and his sister, as to time 
aad distance, and roads and drivers, and inns 
and beds, and weather and dust; andallwere an- 
swered by Mrs St Clair in the manner most cal- 
culated to conciliate those with whom she con- 
yersed— 'till^ in the course of half an hour. Lord 
B^ssville was of opinion, that she was one of the 
best bred, best informed, most sensible, ladylike 
women he had ever conversed with — and his Lord, 
ship was not a person who was apt to form hasty 
opinions upon any subject. 

Lord RossviUe's character was one of those, 
whose traits, though minute, are as strongly* 
marked as though they had been cast in a large 
mould. But, as not even the powers of the mi« 
croscope can impart strength and beauty to the 
object it magnifies, so no biographer could have 
exaggerated into virtues the petty foibles of his 
mind. Yet the predominating qualities were such 
as often cast a false glory around their possessor 
—for the love of power and the desire of human 
applause were the engrossing principles of his 
soul. In strong capacious minds, and in great 
situations, these incentives often produce brilliant 
results ; but in a weak contracted mind, moving 


in the narrow Sphere of domestic life, they couM 
only circulate through the* thousand little chan- 
nels that tend to increase or impair domestic hap^ 
piness. As he was not addicted to any particu-^ 
la3r Tice, he considered himself as a man of -pet^ 
feet Tirtue ; and having been, in some recpects^ 
very prosperous in his fortune, he was thorough* 
ly satisfied that he was a person of the most coik^ 
summate wisdom. With these ideas of himsdf^ 
it is not surprising that he should have deemed 
it his bounden duty to direct and manage every 
man, woman, child, or animal, who came within 
his sphere, and that too in the most tedious and 
tormenting manner. Perhaps the most teaeing 
point in his character was his ambition*— the fatal 
ambition of thousands — ^to be thought an eloquent 
and impressive speaker, even on the commonest 
affairs of domestic life ; for this purpose, he al- 
ways used ten times as many words as were ne- 
cessary to express his meaning, and those too of 
the longest and strongest description. Another 
of his tormenting peculiarities was his desire of 
explaining everything, by which he always per- 
plexed and mystified the sim^t subject. Yet 
he had his good points, far he wished to see 


thoee axomid him happy, provided he was the 
dispeiuser of their happiness, and that they were 
happy predsdy in the manner and degree he 
thought proper. He was a sort of petty benero^ 
lent tyrant ; and any attempt to enlarge his soul; 
or open his understanding, would have been in 
vain. His mind was already full, as ftiU as it 
could hold, of little thoughts, little plans, little 
notions, little prgudices, little whims, and no- 
thing short of regeneration could have made 
him otherwise. He had a code of laws, a code 
of proprieties, a code of delicacies, all his own, 
and he had long languished for subjects to ex- 
ecute them upon. Mrs St Clair and her daugh- 
ter were therefore no small acquisitions to his 
fiimily — ^he looked upon them as two very fine 
pieces of wax, ready to receive whatever im- 
pression he chose to give them ; and the hum- 
ble confiding manner in which his niece had 
been committed to him, had at once secured 
both to mother and daughter his favour and 
protection. Lady Betty^s character does not 
possess materials to fiimish so long a commen- 
tary. She was chiefly remarkable fi>r the quan- 
tity of worsted work she executed, which, for a 


person of het time of life, was considered no lest 
extraordinary than meritorious. She was now 
employed on her fifthrug — ^thecolours were orange 
and blue — ^the pattern an orange, tiger cotcchtmt 
picked out with scarlet upon an azure ground 
She also read all the novels and romances whicb 
it is presumed are published for the exclusive ber 
nefit of superannuated old women, and silly 
young ones ; such as the Enchanted Head — ^the 
Invisible Hand-^the Miraculous Nuptials, &c; 
&c. &c. She was now in the midst of " Bewil* 
dered Affections, or All is not Lost,^ which she 
was reading, unconsciously, for the third time, 
with unbroached delight. Lastly, she carefidly 
watched over a fat, pampered, ill-natured lap-dog, 
subject to epilepsy, and asked a great many use- 
less questions which few people thought of an- 

These were the only members of the family 
who appeared, but Lord Rossville mentioned, 
that two of his nephews were on a visit in the 
neighbourhood, and might be expected the follow, 
ing day. 

^^ Since you are now, Madam,^ said he, address- 
ing Mrs St Clair, ^^ become as it were incoipo^ 


rated in the Rossville family, it k proper and 
expedient that you should be made acquainted 
with all its members. I do not mean that acr 
quaintance which a personal introduction con* 
veys, but that knowledge which we acquire by a 
preconceived opinion, founded upon the expe-^ 
rience of those on whose judgment and accuracy 
yre can rely. I shall, therefore, give you such 
information regarding the junior members of this 
family, as observation and opportunity have i^ 
forded me, and which, I flatter myself, may not 
prove altogether unacceptable or unavailing.^ 
The Earl paused, hemmed, and proceeded* 
" The senior of the two juvenile members to 
whom you will, in all probability, be introduced 
in the course of a very short period, is Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Frederick Delmour, youngest son of 
the late Lord George Delmour, who was second 
son of James Duke of Biurlington, by the Mar- 
chioness of Effenford, widow of the deceased 
Charles Chaloner, Marquis of £ffenford,who died 
at an early period, leaving one son, the present 
Augustus Marquis of il^fienford, married to the La** 
dy Isabella Cadrington, daughter of the Duke of 
JLitchfield, and one daughter, the present much 


admired Countess of Lymington ;«k-oii the other 
hand, William Henry, the present Duke of Bur- 
lington, espoused the only daughter of that illus^ 
trious statesman, John Earl of Harleigh, by 
whom he has issue one son, the Marquis of Haa- 
Ungden, now abroad on account of the delicate 
and precarious state of his health. Thus it hap- 
pens, and I hope I have made it sufficiently clear, 
that certain members of this family are at the 
same time united either by consanguinity, or by 
collateral connection of no remote degree, with 
many — I might say with most— -of the illustrious 
families in the sister kingdom. 

" My sister, the Lady Augusta Dehnour, wi- 
dow of the late Lord George Delmour, at present 
resides in the metropolis with her three daugh- 
ters — one of whom is, I unclerstand, on the e^e 
of forming a highly honourable and advantageous 
alliance with the eldest son of a certain Baronet of 
large fortune and extensive property in the south- 
em extremity of the island-*but of this it might 
not be Bltogetheir delicate to say more at present. 
Colonel Frederick Delmour, then, the subject of 
our more immediate consideration — is in himself 
a gentleman of figure, fashion, accomplishments, 


and of very distinguished bravery in his highly 
honourable profession.. He has ahready had the 
honour of being twice slightly wounded in the 
field of battle, and in being made very honoura- 
ble mention of in the dispatches from the Earl of 
Marsham to his Royal Highness the Commander- 
in-chief. In these respects, the dignity and vaot^ 
tarnished honour of the noble families to whidi 
he belongs have suffered no diminution in his 
person ; but it is to his elder brother,^ and he now 
turned towards Miss St Clair, *^ that we — ^that is, 
the Duke of Burlington and myself, look as to 
one who is to add still greater lustre to the coro- 
nets with which he is so intimately connected. 
To all the natural advantages, accomplishments, 
and acquirements of his brother, he unites ad- 
dress and abilities of the highest order, by means 
of which he has already acted a most distinguish-i 
ed part in the senate, and bids fair to become one 
of the first — if not the first, statesman of this, or, 
indeed, of any age."" The Earl paused, as if over^ 
eome with the prophetic visions which crowded 
on his mind. 

** What time of night is it ?'' asked Lady Betty. 

The Earl, recalled from his high anticipations. 


and reminded of the lapse of time, resumed his 
discourse, but in a less lofty tone. " The junior 
member of this family, whom I have now to present 
to you, is Edward Lyndsay, Esquire, of Lynn- 
wood, in this county, only child of the late Ed- 
ward Lyndsay of Lynnwood, Esquire, and my 
youngest sister, the deceased Lady Jane St ClaiCr 
The late Mr Lyndsay was descended from an 
anjcient and highly respectable family, but, by cer^ 
tain ancestral imprudences, was considerably in- 
volved and embarrassed during his life, in so 
much, that he was under the necessity of accept- 
ing a situation in one of our colonial settlements, 
whither he was accompanied by Lady Jane* 
Both, I lament to say, fell victims, in a short pe- 
riod, to the pestilential effects of the climate, 
leaving this young man, then an infant of three 
years and a half old, to my sole protection and 
guardianship. How these duties were discharged^ 
it is not for me to say ; only, in justice to myself j 
I deem it right and proper to state, that, at the 
expiry of the minority, the estate then was— (I 
say nothing of the means or management — ^let 
these speak for themselves— I simply deem it due 
to myself to state, that the estate was then) — free 


If It id SO iio longer*— ^ and the Earl bowed, and 
waved his hands in that significant manner which 
says, ^^ I wash my hands of it.*^ But his Lord- 
ship took a loiig time even to wash his hands, for 
he still went oh—-" There is, perhaps, no, great- 
er or more insuperable impediment to radical im- 
provement in youth, and it is, I lament to say, 
one of the most distinguishing characteristics of 
the age in which we live, than a disregard for 
the warning voice of those who have, with honour, 
advantage, and dignity, arrived at that period of 
life when they are entitled to the meed o^ at least, 
experience. Had Mr Lyndsay followed the path 
which, with infinite consideration, I had marked 
out for him, he might now, by the instrumentali- 
ty of those great and noble family connections he 
possesses, have been on the high road to honour, 
wealth, distinction, and self-approbation. As it 
is, he has chosen, contrary to my recommendation, 
to decline the highly advantageous situation of- 
fered to him in our Asiatic dominions, assigning 
as his sole reason, that he was satisfied with what 
he already had, and meant to devote himself to 
the management and improvement of his own 
estate. A young man in his situation in life. 


scarcely yet twenty-six years of age, highly edu- 
cated, as I made it a point he should be, and 
possessed of an ancient family estate, by no means 
great, and, I much fear, not wholly unincum- 
bered, to refuse a situation of sudi honour, emo- 
lument, and patronage ! — ^Mr Lyndsay may be 
a good man ; but it was my most anxious wish 
and endeavour to haye made him more-— I would 
have made him^-had he submitted to my guid- 
ance and contro]r<-I would hare made him a 
great man !^ 

The solemn and d^nified silence which fol- 
lowed this .wasvhappily broken by the announce- 
.ment of supper. The evening wore slowly away, , 
for each minute seemed like a drc^ of lead to 
Miss St Clair, who was more of an age and tem- 
perament to enjoy, than to endure. At length it 
ended, and she retired to her apartment with 
mingled feelings of pleasure and disiqipointment. 



** O life ! how pleasant in thy mozning, 
Young Fancy's rays thy hills adorning I 
Cold-pausing caution's lessons scorning, 

We frisk away, 
Like school-hoys at th* expected warning, 

To joy and play." 


The following monung Gertrude rose early, 
impatient to take an unmolested survey of what 
she abeady looked upon as her own. The suite 
of public rooms engaged but little of her atten- 
tion ; she had already settled, in her own. mind, 
that these must be complete!}^ new fiimished, 
and with this sweeping resolution, she passed 
quickly through them, merely stopping to ex- 
amine the few pictures they contained* An open 
door, an almost dark passage, and. a turnpike 
stair, at length presented themselves as stimu- 
lants to her curiosity, and tempted her to diverge^ 
from the straight line she had hitherto follow^. 

VOL. I. c 


It was the original part of the building, to which 
a modem Gothic firont had been affixed, and she 
soon found herself in all the inextricable maze of 
long narrow passages, leading only to disappoint- 
ment, — steps which seemed to have been placed, 
as if on purpose, to make people stumble — and 
little useless rooms, which looked as if they had 
been contrived solely for the pastime of hide and 
seek. At length she entered one she guessed 
to be Lord Rossville'^ii study, and was hastily re- 
treating, when her eye was caught by an old-£si« 
shioned glass door, opening upon a shrubbery. 
Shewed to xnfen it, but it was locked 9 the pro* 
ipM ftom widictut was alluring, and she fdt ub^ 
wffling to tum away from it ; the windaws were 
but ii little distance fi:imi^ the ground, and, haying 
&p(med one, and smelt the violets that, grew bei- 
aeaiii, her next«impulse was to spring lightly 
thUNigh it into the garden. As she inhaled the 
S^h morning air, fraught with the sweets of 
teatly mimmer, where ^^ the sccmt comes and goes 
Vke the warbling of music^^ and. looked on the 
l4vdy landscape as it sbone in th« deep calm ra- 
diMce of the morning fiun, her heart, glowinjf with 
all the joyottsness of youth and health, exulted in 


the brightness of creaticm. She wandered to a 
eo^ncdderable ^stance, till, having gained the top 
of an eminence, she stood to admire the effect 
of some cottages situated on the green shelving 
bank which overhung the river. ** What a 
fHretty picturesque thing a cottage is,^ thought 
she to herself; " how gracefiilly its smoke rises 
fifom among the trees, and contrasts with the' 
clear atmosphere around. When this is mine, I 
will certainly have some pretty cottages built in 
sight of the castle, and Jiave the good people to 
dance on the green sward before their doors in an 
evening when their work is done. O, how easy it 
must be to be good, when one has the power of 
dding good !^^ 

Ignorant of herself and of the nature of the 
human heart, Gertrude believed that to will and 
to do were one and the same ; as yet untaught, 
that sdl vague baseless schemes of virtue, all vain 
romantic dreams of benevolence, are as much the 
cobwebs of imagination as the air-built castles of 
human happiness, whether of love, glory, riches, 
or ambition. 

The beauty of the morning — ^the interest each 
object excited — the song of the birds — the smell of 


the opening flowers — ^the sound of the waters, all 
combined to lull her visionary mind into an Ely- 
sium of her own creating, and as she walked 
along, in all the ideal enjoyment of her Utopian 
schemes* she found herself at the door of one of 
those cottages, whose picturesque appearance had 
charmed her so much at a distance. A nearer 
• survey, however, soon satisfied her, that the view 
owed all its charms to distance. Some coarse, 
lint-haired, mahogany-faced, half-naked urchins, 
with brown legs and black feet, were dabbling in 
a gutter before the door, while some bigger ones 
were pursuing a pig and her litter, seemingly for 
the sole purpose of amusement, 

" What a pity those children are all so ugly !'*' 
thought Miss St Clair ; " it would have been so 
delightfiil to have had them all nicely dressed, 
and have taught them myself ; but they are so 
firightfiil, I could have no pleasure in seeing 
them.** However, she overcame her repugnance 
so far as to accost them. " Would not you like 
to be made nice and clean, and have pretty new 
clothes ?^ 

" Aye !'' answered one of them with a broad 
stare, and istill broader accent. 


*^ And to go to school, and be taught to re^, 
and write, and work ?^ 

" Naw r answered the whole troop with one 
voice, as they renewed their splashing with firesh 
v^ur* Miss St Clair made no farther attempts 
in that quarter, but she entered the cottage, care- 
fiilly picking her steps, and wrapping her gar^- 
ments close round her, to prevent their contract- 
ing any impurities. The smoke, which had figured 
so graeefiJly out of doors, had a very different 
effect within, and she stood a few minutes on the 
threshold before she could summon courage to 
penetrate farther. At length, as her eyes got 
accustomed to the palpable obscure, she discover- 
ed the figure of a man, seated in a wooden chair 
by the fire, in a ragged coat and striped woollen 
nightcap. . " He is ill, poor creature,'' thought 
she, and quickly advancing, she wished him good 
morning. Her salutation was respectfully re- 
turned, and the man, makii^ an effort to rise, 
invited her to be seated with considerable cour- 

" I am afraid you are ill,'' said Gertrude, de- 
clining the invitation, and looking with compas- 
sion on his lean sallow visage. 


" Oo, 'deed he's very ill, my Leddy/' cried a 
voice from behind, and presently advanced a 
stout, blooming, broad-faced dame, dad in a 
scanty blue flannel petticoat and short-gown. 
She was encompassed by a girr or hoop supipoft- 
ing two stoups,* a piece of machinery altogether 
peculiar to Scotland. Having disengi^ed her- 
self from this involvement or convolvement, sli^ 
dropt a curtsey to her guest, and then wiping 
down a chair, pressed her to be seated. 

^^ The gudeman's really extraordinar ill, my 
Leddy,*" continued she in a high key. " I'm 
sure I ken na what to do wi' him ; it was first a 
sutten doon cauld> an' noo he's fa'n in till a sort 
o' a dwinin like, an' atweel I dinna think be^ 
e'er get the better o't." 

" Have you any doctor to see him ?" inquired 
Miss St Clair. 

^^ Oo, 'tweel he's had doctors eneugh, an' nae- 
thing's been spared on him. I'm sure he's pit* 
ten as muckle doctor's stuff o' ae kind an' anither 
in tiU himsel' as might hae pushened him twen- 

* A Btoup is Deitber a bucket, nor a pitcberi nor a jar, nor 
an any thing but a stoup. 


ty times owet ; but weel a wftt^ I think the mair 
he taks the waur he grows.'*' 
-^^ Perhiqpfl he takes too much medicine.^ 

^^ ^Deed I'll no say but he may, but ye ken, my 
Leddy, what can he do ? — he maun tak what the 
doctor sends him*-^he things canna be lost ; but 
'tweel he's very sweered to tak th^n whiles, tho' 
Fm sure muckle money they cost, an', as I tell 
him, theyVe dear morsels." 

^^ Perhaps if he were to leave off the medicines, 
and try the effect of fresh air and good milk, 
and soup, which I shall endeavour to procure for 

^^ I'm sure we're muckle obliged to you, my 
Leddy, but he need nae want for fresh air, he can 
get eneugh o^ that ony day by gawen to the door ; 
but there's nae gettin him to stir frae the chimley 
lug ; and, 'deed, I canna say he wants for milk or 
broth either, for ane o' the young gentlemen up 
bye spoke to my Lord for us, and he's really no 
to mean for his meat if he wad tak it ; as I teU 
him whiles, my certy, mony a ane wad be glad to 
hae't for the takin." 

*^ Is there any thing else, then, in which I can 
be of use to you ?" inquired Miss St Clair, now 


addressing the invalid, ^^ is there any thing you 
particularly wish for ?" 

The man held up a ragged elbow—" Gin your 
Leddyship has an auld coat to spare,^ said he, in 
a hesitating voice. 

** An auld coat !*" interposed his dame ; *^ oo, 
what could fk an auld coat in your head, Tam ? 
I^m sure there^s a hantel things mair needfii"^ than 
an auld coat — no that he wad be the waur o^ a coat 
neither, for he has naething atween that puir dud 
on his back and his marriage ane, and his Sabbath- 
day suit in tlie kist there.'' 

" Pray let me know what things are most want- 
ed'for your husband's comfort," said Miss St Clair, 
" and I shall make a point of sending them— a 

bit of carpet, for instance" looking upon the 

damp clay floor. 

" Wud ye like a bit carpet, Tam, the leddy 
asks?" roared' his wife to him; then, without 
waiting for an answer, 

^^ Oo, 'deed he disna ken what he wud like ; 
an' he's ne'er been used till a carpet, and I daur 
say it wud just be a disconvenience to him, noo 
that he canna be fashed wi' ony thing — no but 
what he might pit up wi' a bit carpet, I'se war- 

CHAPTBR ir. 41 

raii\ if he had kher things that «re a hantdi mm 

*^ A more comfortable chair, then, I may sure- 
ly send,'' said Gertrude, still persisting in her be- 
nevolent attempts. 

. " The leddy's for sendin' ye anither chyre, 
Tarn,'' again shouted his tender helpmate — the 
husband nodded his assent ; ^^ but, Hweel, he's 
sutten sae lang in that ane, I doot it's no worth 
his while to ehynge 't noo ; and I dinna think he 
could be fiushed wi^ anither chyre— -no but what 
we micht pit up wi' anither chyre or twa, if w^ 
had aw thing else wise^like."* 

:'* I am sorry there is nothing I can think of 
that would be acceptable to you"— — 

" Oo, I'll no say that, my Leddy," briskly in- 
teiTupted the hostess ; ^^ there's a hantel things, 
weel a wat, we hae muckle need o'-*-for ae thing 
— ^but I maist think shame to tell't — an"" it's really 
nae faut o' mine neither, my Leddy ; but it's just 
sae happent, wi' ae thing an' anither, I hae ne'er 
gotten a steek o' the gudeman's dead claise ready 
— and noo to think that he's drawin' near his end, 
Fm sure I canna tell the vexation it's cost me." 
Here the dame drew a deep sigh, and wiped her 


eyes with the comer of her apron, then proceeded 
— <^ Siena a discreditable like thing to hae said, 
an^ sic a comfort as^ nae doot, it wad be to him to 
gee aw thing ready and wise-like afore he gaed out 
o' the world — ^A suit o' gude b^ eomfortaUe 
dead claise^ Tammes,^ appealing to her husband, 
" wad set ye better than aw the braw ehyrei an^ 
carpets T th^ toon. No but what if ance ye had 
the tane, ye micht pit up wi^ the tither ^ but wad 
nae^t be a bonny-like thing to see you set up wi*a 
braw carpet, and a saft chyre, an^ to think ye had 
nae sa muckle as a wise-like windin'' sheet to row 
ye in?" 

A great deal of the pathos of this harangue 
was, of course, unintelligible to Miss St Clair ; 
but she comprehended the main scope of it, and, 
somewhat shocked at this Scotch mode of evinc- 
ing conjugal affection, she put down some money 
and withdrew, rather surprised to find what dif- 
ferent ideas of comfort prevailed in different coun* 
tries, and a good deal disappointed in the failure 
of her benevolent intentions. 



What kind of catechizing call you this ? 

Much Ado about Nothings 

Time had passed unheeded, and chance, rather 
than design, led Miss St Clair to retrace her steps, 
when, as she drew near the castle, she was met by 
one of the servimts, who informed her, that he 
and several others had been sent in search of her, 
as it was long past the breakfast hour, and the fa- 
mily had been some time assembled. Ashamed of 
her own thoughtlessness, she quickened her steps, 
and desiring the servant to show the way to the 
breakfast^oom, without waiting to adjust her 
dress, she hastily entered, eager to apologise for 
het transgression* But the dread solemnity that 
aat on Lord Rossville^s brow made her falter in her 
purpose. Widi the tea-pot in one hand, with the 
other he made an awfel wave for her seated. 
Lady Betty was busy mixing a mess of hot rolls. 


cream, and sugar, for her epileptic lap-dog. An 
impending storm sat on Mrs St Claires face, but 
veiled under an appearance of calm dignified dis- 
pleasure. Gertrude felt as if denounced by the 
whole party — she knew not for what, unless for 
having been twenty minutes too late for breakfast, 
and, in some trepidation, she began to apologize 
for her absence. Lord Rossville gave several 
deep sepulchral hems, then, as if he had been 
passing sentence upon a criminal, said,-7 

*^ I am not averse to postpone the discussion of 
this delicate and painfid investigation, Miss St 
Clair, until you shaU have had the benefit of re-^ 

Gertrude was confounded — " My Lord!'' ex- 
claimed she, in amazement, <^ I am very sorry if 
any thing has occurred,'' — and she looked round 
for an explanation. 

Lord Rossville hemmed — ^looked still more ap- 
palling, and then spoke as follows : — 

" You are doubtless aware. Miss St Clair, 
that, in all coimtries where civilization and refine- 
ment have made any considerable progress, female 
delicacy and propriety are — are ever held in the 
highest estimation and esteem." 


His Lordship paused ; and as no contradiction 
was offered to this his proem, he proceeded — 

" But you must, or certainly ought, to be like- 
wise aware, that it is not merely these virtues 
themselves which must be carefiilly implanted, 
and vigilantly watched over, in the young and 
tender female — ^for even the possession of the vir- 
tues themselves are not a sufficient shield for the 
female character. It was a maxim of Julius Ca^ 
sar^s, unquestionably the greatest conqueror that 
ever lived, that his wife must not only be spot- , 
less in herself, but that she must not even be sus- 
pected by others ; a maxim that, in my opinion,, 
deserves to be engraven in letters of gold, and 
certainly cannot be too e&rly, or too deeply, im-. 
printed on the young and tender female breast.^ 

His Lordship had gained a climax, and he 
stopped, overpowered with his own eloquence. 
Mrs St Clair made a movement expressive of 
the deepest attention, and most profound admira-^ 

^' Such being my sentiments— -sentiments in 
which I am borne out by the testimony of one of 
the greatest men who ever lived— it is not sur- 
prising that I should feel^ and feel deeply too. 

46 THE lNfi£KlTAlfC£. 

the glaring indiscretion you hare^ I griere to 
say, already committed, since your entrance iridic 
in these walls.^ 

Then, after another srilemn pause, during 
which Miss St Clair sat in speechless amaj»« 
ment, he resumed with more than senotoriid dig^- 

*< I wish to be correctly informed at what hour 
you quitted your apartment this momii^, Miss 
St Clair ?^ 

^^ Indeed, my Lord, I cannot tell,^ answered 
Gertrude, with perfect ntCiiwti. '* I had foigol 
to wind up my watch^ and I did ttot hear any 
clock strike; but, from the appearance of the 
Burning, I am sure it was early/' 

*< And what, may I Ask, was the mode or man^ 
|ier. Miss St Clair, by which you thought pro^ 
per to quit my house at so untimely and unusual 
lui hour?^ demanded the Earl in a voice of re^ 
jpreesed emotion. 

Gertrude blushed. — ^^ I am afraid I was guilty 
,of a transgres»on, my Lord, for which I ask 
your pardon; but, allured by the fineness of the 
morning, and the beauty of the scenery, I was 
desirous of getting out to enjoy them, and hav- 

crtAPtfift V. 47 

iabgin vniii tri^d to mak^ my way through a door> 
I was tempted to escape by a window.^ 

Miss 8t €lair spoke with so much simplicity 
and gentleness, and there was so much sweetness 
and even melody in her voice mid accent, that 
iSttf othei* than Lord Rossville would have wish- 
ed her offence had been greater, that her apology 
fldght have been longer. Not so his Lordship, 
who possessed neither taste nor ear, and was alive 
to no charm but what he called propriety. At 
iht conclusion of his niece^s acknowledgment; 
the Earl struck his forehead, and took two or 
three turns up and down the room, then sudden- 
ly stoppin^^ 

V . << Are you at all aware, Miss St Clair, of the 
glaring^-*the*-**I must say— gross impropriety of 
such a step in itsel{'-K>f the still more gross con- 
struction that will be put upon it by the world ? 
The simple fact has only to be told, and one in- 
ference, and but oncj will be drawn. You have 
quitted the apartment assigned to you under my 
roof at a nameless, untimely, consequently, unbe- 
fitting hour ; and you rashly, wantonly, and im- 
properly, precipitate yourself from a window — and 
what, window ? why, the window of my private 


sitting room ! A young female is seen issuing 
from the window of my study at a nameless hour 
in the morning — the tale circulates — and where, 
I ask, am I ?" 

" Where was you ?" asked Lady Betty. 

Mrs St Clair put her handkerchief to her 

" I am very sorry, my Lord, that I should 
have done any thii^ to displease you— if I have 
done wron g ^ 

"7/* you have done wrong ! Good heavens ! 
is it thus you view the matter, Miss St Clair .^^ 
What / think wrong ! Who that has proper 
feelings of delicacy and propriety^^who that has 
a due regard for character and reputation, but 
must view the matter precisely as I do ? Such 
a step — and at such an hour !^ 

And his Lordship resumed his troubled walk. 

Unacquainted with her uncle's character, and 
ignorant of the manners and customs of the coun- 
try, Gertrude was led to believe she had commit- 
ted a much more serious offence than she had 
been aware of, and she was at length wrouj^ up 
to that degree of distress which the Earl deemed 
necessary to mark her contrition. Softened at 


CHAPtEft V. 4S 

^tii^^siiig the ^e^ bfMBp^4r^ irhidi he bfi- 
puted to die 'fine style of ffislnfagiuge, lie ncr^ 
tooM hk niee^^a fiand, and addbesfted^ker in what 
he intended -Bar a more ebnaeiaiBmf Btrain;: 

*' I hare considered it Mjr duty-»-i» pftiiifel 
one, ddubtlffls^ but^ neverthetess, my /diitjrf^-40 
point 6Hi to yon &^ inqpH^paJety. yoa haPFfr^l 
h<^ and belieye,-^inddTertentity cdmraittcdi Ai 
a mecbber df raj fdmSy^ and one foil^ irhoae actions 
the T^orld will natnsdly (kmeAder ine responsibfo^ 
it is necessary that I slmild h^ncefinrih take up- 
on myself the ^tire r^giili^dn of your Atfure 
manners and oonduct in. li£sk. Ym, Madani^^ 
to Mrs St Clair^ ^^ have delegated to ide the am 
didri^ of a paa^nt, and I should iHr merit so im-i. 
jjortanl a tniti^ were I; td.shrmk/&Dm'€he di»i 
diavge of thd £imdtion& of 4;he parental 6fficev^ 

Miss St'OUdr's bkod'tan cold atrthe ifaeiiglifts 
of ti^ihg subjected te such thraldom. - ' 

^' But before •dismissing tiifo subject-«^I- trust 
fer fivefr-i^let me here stitte t6 you my sei^imenis 
inUf^gard to yotoig ladies walkidg before breaks 
finti^— a practice of which j I muat confess,;! hafe 
dways disaplnrchred. I am aware it is a pactice 
that has the sanction of many highly respectable 

VOL. I. D 


authorities, who have written cm the subject of 
£nnale ethics ; but, I own, I cannot ajqproYe of 
young hidies of rank and fiunily leaving their 
apartments, at the same hour with chamber-midds 
and dairy-maids, and walking out unattended at 
an hour when only the lower orders of the peo- 
ple are abroad. Walking before fareakfiut, then, 
I must consider as a most rude masculine habit 
— ^as the Right Honourable Edmund Burke ob- 
serves, ^ an air of robustness and strength is 
highly prejudicial to beauty,^ (that is, as I ap- 
prehend, female beauty,) ^ while an appearance 
of fragility is no less essential to it f — ^nd cer. 
tainly nothing, in my opinion, can be more un- 
becoming, more unfeminine, than to behold a 
young lady seat herself at the breakfast-table with 
the complexion of a dairy-maid, and the appetite 
of a ploughman. At the same time, I am an 
advocate for early rising, as there are, doubtless, 
many ways in which young ladies may spend 
their mornings, without rambling abroad; and 
you will find, by looking in your dressing-room, 
that I have made ample provision for your 
instruction, and amusement, and delight. Let 
morning walks, therefore, from henceforth have 


an ead.^ And he pressed his oiece^s hand with 
that air of pompous forgiveness so revoltii^ firom 
one human being to jtnother. Luckily, his Lord- 
ship was here summoned away ; but ere he left 
the room, he signified his intention of returning 
in an hour to show the ladies what was most 
worthy of obi^ervation in the castle and demesnes. 
Absurd as this scene may appear, few will 
deny the undue importance which many people 
attach to the trifles of life, and how often mole- 
hills are magnified into mountains by those with 
whom trifles are indeed << the sum of human 



*' By'r lakin, I can go no farther, Sir, 

My old bones aches : here*s a maze trod indeed 

Through fotth-rights and tneanden ! by your patiencci« 

I needs must rest me/' 

The Tempeai. 

" True as tbe dial to the sun, 
£ven though it be not thined upoh^" 

LoBD RbssviLLB retumed at the hour ap- ^ 
pointed, to do the honours of his castle. But, as ^ ^^ 
most of my readers have doubtless experienced 
the misery of being shown a house where there 
was nothing to be seen, and can tell, ^^ how hard it 
is to climb^ from the second sunk story to the 
uppermost garrets, I shall not be so unmerciful 
as to drag them up stairs and down stairs to my 
Xiady'^s chamber, an4 into all the chambers except 
his Lordship^s own, which he was too decorous to 
exhibit. Neither shall I insist upon their hear- 
ing every thing explained and set forth even to the 
Dutch tiles of the dairy, the hot and cold pipes 


of the vmshih^house, the new invented ovfogj 
the admirably constnicted lardec, the inimitable 
bathfl; with idl tl^erwoodeK-wovking, fl^am-gd^^ 
apparatms ef^^'the kitehen.' Here Mrs St Clair 
iKSQuitted herse]f to adpuration, for ts see jiidi* 
IsioQid^ reqiiir^ no smaJi skill in the seer, and 
^^re are few who see things precisely as diey 
ought to be seen. Many see too much-i-^^nany 
^00 little. 9ojn'& see only to find fimlt-HBome oDi^ 
ly to admire ; some, are, or pretend to be, abeady 
acquainted with every thing they are shown-^-*some 
are profoundly ignorant, consequ^tly, cannot pro- 
pig|4y appreciate the hiv^itions or improvement^ 
liabibited. Some are too inquisitive— ^some too in- 
different ; but it is as impossible to describe the 
vast vaviety of seers as of mosses, neither is it 
eagy to point out the innumeraUe rocks on which 
a seet may strike. A tseatise, illustrated by a 
£&w memorable examples or awftd warnings, might 
possibly be of some use to the unskilful behold- 
er. But, as in most other arts and sdenees, 
mueh must depend upon natural genius. Mrs 
Pt Clair was so happily endowed, that shewas en- 
abled to see every thing as it was intended to be 
Mi^n, and to bestow her admiration in 4he exact 


proportion in which she perceived it vas tequi)r« 
ed, through all the intennediftte degrees, from 
ecstatic laptore, down to emphatic approvaL 
With Miss St Clair it was fiir otherwise ; she had 
no taste for pddng into pantries, and diimnejrs^ 
and cellars, or of hearing any of the indegant 
minutifle of life detailed. It seemed like breaking 
all the enchantments of existence to be thus made 
to view the complicated machinery by which life^ 
artificial life, was sustained; and die rgoiced 
when the survey was ^ided, and it was prc^KMsed, 
afier luncheon, to take a drive through the 
grounds. Gertrude flattered herself, that here 
she would, at least, eigoy the repose of inactivity, 
and be su£Pered to see as much as could be seen, 
from a carriage window^ of the beauties of na- 
ture. But Lord Rossville^s mind was never in 
a quiescent state in any situation ; there was 
always something to be done or to be seen—* 
the windows were to be either let down or 
drawn up^the blinds to be drawn up or pulled 
down-^here was aomethmg that ought to bese^ 
but could not be seen->— or there was something 
se^ that ought not to have be^ seen ; thus his 
mind wM not only its own plague, but the plague 



of all who had the misfortune to bear him com- 

In vain were creation^s charms spread before 
his eyes.-— There is a mental blindness^ darker 
than that which shrouds the visual orb^ and Na- 
ture's works were to Lord Rossville an univer- 
sal blank, or rather they were a sort of account- 
book, in which were registered all his own petty 
doings. It was here he had drained-— there he 
had embanked — ^here he had planted — there he 
had cut down— here he had built a bridge — ^there 
he had made a road— *here he had levelled— 
there he had raised, &c. &c. &c. To all that 
his own head had planned he was feelingly alive ; 
but, for the ^^ dread magnificence of Heaven,^ 
he had neither eye, ear, nor soul, and must, there- 
fore, be forgiven, if insensible to its influence. 
Mrs St Clair was not much more highly gifted in 
that respect, but she could speak, if she could not 
feel, and she expatiated and admired, till Lord 
Rossville thought her, without exception, the 
cleverest woman he had ever met with. 
' ^^ Since you are so gre^t an enthusiast in the 
beauties of nature, my dear Madam,^ said he, 
addressing his sister-in-law, ^^ we shall extend our 


drive a little fiurthes than I had piuposed, that I 
may have the pleasure of showing you, at a s]^glc| 
eaup d^tmbi the :idude extent of iJie Rosarille 
possessions in this county, while, at the sama 
tune, yoH will embrace some otben ol^ects, in 
wbick I am not wholly unconcerned^-gBcnjamin,? 
to the serxranty ^^ \» Stnnade HUl,''^ and to Fii^ 
naele HiU the horaee" he#3 wece turned. ^^ Fin? 
nacle Hill,'^ continued the Earl, ^' is a very cele* 
brated q^t ; it is a purchase I made fiom Lord 
Faixaere some yeasa ago ; it is much resorted to 
by strangers, as commanding^ with few excep- 
tions, one of the finest views in Scotland.^ 

Mrs St Clahr hated fine views, and she tried 
to get ol^ by pretending scruides about encroach- 
ing so much on his Lordship^s time, goodness, 
and so forth-^but all in vain ; to Pinnacle Hill 
they were driven, and, after being dragged up as 
far as horses could go, they were (as, indeed, the 
name implied) obliged to alight and ascend on 
fi)ot. W|di considerable toil they reached the 
top, and scarcely were they there;, when the wind, 
having changed to the eifst, its never-fidling ac- 
companiment, a raw mist, began to gather all 
round. But Lord Rpssville was insensible even 


to 911 east wi^d-^l^s bodily sensations being quite 
as obtuse as his mental ones ; and having got to 
th^ top p( the Piwade, he fiiced him roi]n49 and, 
in the very t^th of the enemy, began to point 
out what was ^nd wha( was net to be seen. 

" HfBre you haye a very comman^ng vi^w^ or 
would have bad, if the atmosphere had been some- 
what clearer ; as it is, I cw enable you distinctly 
to trace out the boundary line of the Rossville es- 
tate. Observe the course of the river in the di? 
rection of lyiy cane — ^you see it plainly here-— 
tb^re it disappears amongst the Millbank woods 
f — ^now it takes a turn, and you have |t again to 
your left— you follow me ?^ 

" Perfectly, my Lord,'' replied Mrs St Cla|r, 
although she saw nothing but a wreath of paist. 

" Undoubtedly, that must be tjie. rivfr .wp 

see," said his Lordship doubtingly ; <^ but, at 

the same time, we never can rely, with perfept 

Security, upon the watery element ; it ha9 P^aiiy 

ar^semblanoes, which are not easily detected at a 

distance — a bleachfield, for instance, has npt un- 

fir^uenfly ]been mi^tal^en for a piece of water ; 

and WQ read of a very singiilar dep^ption prodi}- 



ced upon sand in the eastern countries^ and 
termed the mirageP 

'' Water is, indeed, a deceitfiil element,^ said 
Mrs St Clair, hoping, by this affirmative, to 
get to the lee-side of the discussion. 

^^ On the other hand, it is a most usefiil and 
invaluable element ; without water, where would 
be our navigation — our commerce— our know- 
ledge— our arts ? — ^in one word, water may be 
termed the bulwark of Britain.'*^ 
- « It may indeed,'' said Mrs St Clair, her teedi 
t^hattering as she spoke ; to water we owe our 
^dstence as a nation, our liberties, civil and reli- 
gious," and she retreated a few steps, on the faith 
of having settled the matter. 

<^ Pardon me there, my dear Madam," said 
the Earl, retaining his cnriginal footing ; " that 
is, perhaps, going a little too far ; strictly speak- 
ing, we cannot, with propriety, be said to owe 
our existence to water, since, had we not been an 
island, a highly favoured island, we should certain^ 
ly have formed part of the vast continent of 
Europe — and with regard to our liberties, the 
Magna Charta, that boast of Britain, was un- 


qiiedtionabfy procured^ and, I trust, will ^ver be 
maintuiied, on terra firma.'*' 

Mrs St Clair could almost have given up the 
game at this point-— to stand on the very pinna- 
cle of a pinnacle, in the face of an east wind, and 
be talked to about bulwarks and Magna Chartas ! 
it was too much* 

^^ How very cold you look, mama,^ said Miss 
St Clair, compassionating her mother^s feelii^. 

<^ Cold r repeated Lord Bossville, in a tone 
of surprise and displeasure ; <^ impossible-v-cold 
in the month of May ! the day would be too hol^ 
were it not for this cooling breeze.^ 

This was worse and worse — Mrs St Clair 
groaned internally, as she thought, ^^ How will it 
be possible to drag out existence with a man who 
calls a piercing east wind a cooling teeese !^ 

Lord Rossvyie raised his cane, and resumed 
his observations at great length upon the ravages 
committed by the river on his friend and neigh* 
hour Boghall^s property. Mrs St Clair wished 
the Boghall acres in the bottom of the Red Sea, 
though even from thence Lord RossviUe might, 
perhaps, have fished t)iem up, lis a thorough- 
bred t<»^ntor, like a first rate magician, can cidl 


sfurits, ereii (ram the vaaty deq», to tdrment lii« 

^* Here,"" c(H|tiDU)Bd tb^ Earl, taldngliia ntter- 
Ui-I^w by the hand, a»d hadmg her to the ut- 
most verge of all she hated) a bleak exposed [aro.- 
inontoiy ; ^^ here we oosmitaiid a "no less charxnio^ 
prospect m a different style :-— pbaerve that range 
irf hills." 

'' Superb i"" exclaimed Mrs St Ckir, -with aH 
aguish shudder. 

" Why, yes— the hiJhr themselyes are Tery 
well — ^but do you observe nothing, my dear Ma- 
dam, that relieves the eye from what a friend of 
o(U|ie justly calls a boundless continuity of shade ?^ 

Mrs St Clair ahnost cracked hear eyeuhalb 
straining in the direotion pointed out, but, like 
sister Anne, could see nothing to the purpose. > 

^^ I suspect yqu are loddng rather too high ; 
nearer the base, and allow your eye to run idong 
by the point of py cane^-^there, you must have 
got it now." 

There are, perhaps, few every-day sitoatioBB 
more tormenting to a delicate mind, than that 
of being called upon to see what you camMit 
see-i^you must ei^er ibsappoint tlie viewa of 

C^AFTJ£ft Ti. 61 

emideieiice, (m k Is mtich to he feared too ihsny 
4o>) by ptetending^ifadt you have at last hit thg 
niark, whether it be a puff of 6moke, iiidicative t/t 
a tdwn, a white cloud of the ocean, or a black 
iq»eck of an island. . - 

" Ah ! I think I discover something now,'' cried 
Mrs St Clair, quite at a loss to guess whether the 
Irhite mote in question was a church steeple, o^ 
a ship^s mast, or any other wonderRd object of 
the same nature, which generous long-sighted 
people will always make a point of sharing with 
their les» gifted friends. 

^^ And you think the effect good.?^ 

^^ Admirablc'^inimitable !^ 

** Why,, the situation was my own choice; 
there was a committee appointed to make choice 
of the most favourable site, and they fortunately 
fell in with my views on the subject, and, indeed, 
pittd me the compliment of ccmsulting my feelings 
on the occasion t«-^ puMic monument, I con- 
ceive, ought, undoubtedly, to be placed in a con- 
spicuous and elevated situation ; but more espe- 
dally, when that situation happens to be in the 
very grounds of not only ihe original proposer 


«ad principal heritor in the oounly^ but likewise, 
the personal Mend of the illustrious dead tos 
whom this tribute is decreed-Hpor, I am proud, 
to say» our renowned patriot, the great Lord Pen-, 
sionwell) was (with the excellent Lord Dunder- 
head) the associate of my youthful years — ^th^ 
friend of my maturer age.*^ 

" Happy the country," said Mrs St Clair, now 
driyen almost to frenzy, ^^ whose nobles are thus- 
gifted with the poWjer of reflecting kindred excel- 
lence, and perpetuating national virtue, on th^ 
broad basis of private fijendship**? 

Mrs St Clair knew she was talking nonsense^ 
but she also knew who she was talking to, and 
was sure it would 'pass. Lord Rossville, to be 
sure, was a little puzzled, but he saw it was 
meant as a compliment, and contained a fine 
sounding sentiment, and it was therefore well re- 
ceived. Fortunately, the rain now began to fall« 
and every object being completely shrouded in 
mist, his Lordship was obliged to give in ; but 
he comforted himself, and thought he comforted 
his companions, by promising to return, when the 
weather was more propitious, to. repeat and com- 
plete their enjoyment 



^' Moet muncaly most meUndioly !** 


Dinner passed heavily, for, although its sx^ 
rangements were faultless, there was a want of 
that ease which is the essence of good cheer. The- 
evening entertainment was still worse, for Lord; 
RossviUe piqued himself upon his musical talents, 
and Miss St Clair, whose taste and execution were 
both of a superior order, was doomed to the tor^ 
tures of his Lordship^s accompaniment. Hi« 
ftke chords— his overstrained cadences-— his pal*- 
sied shakes— -his tones half and whole, grated up- 
on her ear, and she felt that mudc and melody 
were sometimes very different things. He affected 
to despise all music, except that of the great com- 
posers, and chose for the subject of his execution^ 
Beethoven's " Synfonia Pastorale.'' — ** Here,'' 
said he, as he placed it before his niece and him- 
self, ^^ observe, the great point is to have jonjDt 


mind duly impressed with the ideas these grand 
and characteristic movements are designed to ex- 
press. Here, we have, in the first place, * The 
Prospect ;^— we must, of course, infer, that It is a 
fine or pleasing prospect, such, for example, as 
we viewed to-day, that the great composer intend- 
ed to represent-^let your movements therefore be 
gracefiil and aerial — ^light and shade, hill and 
dale, wood and water ;*^then foillowB ^ The Rivu- 
let,^ — that, I Med sckrcdyinfinm you, Biust be ex- 
pressed by a gentle, murmuring, liqtiid, trickling 
measure. Next we have the * Yilliige Dance,' 
brisk, gay, and eihilsrating^-Hrustic^ but not vul.^. 
gar. As a powetM contrast to these simple 
scenes now biwsts ixpon us ^ The Siorm,! awful, su« 
blune, overpowering as the confiict of the ele^ 
ments,— howling winds, descending torfents, hail, 
thunder, lightning, all must be Conveyed here, or 
the mighty master's aim is rendered abortive. To 
soothe the mind after this awful explosion of ge-' 
nius, we wind up the Whde with the ^Shepherd's 
Song,' breathing the soft accents of peace aod 
padtoral innocence^-^and how da cdpof^ 

Miss St Clair might well shuddeif at the pro- 
spect b^ore her, and her tortures wenf exquisite. 



when she found her ear, taste, feeling, science, all 
placed under the despotic sway of his Lordship^s 
bow and foot ; but, at length, her sufferings were 
ended by the announcement of supper. ^^ Ha !*" 
exclaimed he, starting up, ^^ it seems we take no 
note of time here.^ This was a favourite Jei^ de 
mot of the EarFs, and, indeed, it was suspected 
that he sometimes allowed himself to be surprised 
for the pleasure of repeating it. 

Supper was nearly over, when the trampling of 
horses, barking of dogs, ringing of bells, and all 
the usual clamour which attends the arrival of a 
person of distinction, caused a sensation in the 
company. Lady Betty asked what that was, 
while she took her favourite on her lap, and cover- 
ed it with her pocket-handkerchief, from be- 
neath which, however, issued^ ever ^nd anon, a 
low asthmatic growl. 

" It is Colpnel Delmour, my Lady,*^ answer- 
ed the pompous maiire (f hotels who had dispatch- 
ed a messenger to inquire. 

^^ It is an extraordinary and somewhat impro- 
per time of night, I think — — .'' 

But his Lordship^s remarks were stopped by 
the entrance of the party in qi^estion. Merely 

VOL. X. E 


touching his uncle^s hand as he passed him, and 
scarcely noticing Lady Betty, Colonel Delmour 
advanced to Mrs and Miss St Clair, and paid his 
compliments to them with all the graceM high- 
bred ease of a man of fashion ; then calling for a 
chair, he seated himself by his cousin, seem- 
ingly regardless of one having been placed by 
Lord Rossville's orders on the other side of the 
table. Colonel Delmour was strikingly hand- 
some, both in face and form, and he possessed 
that high hereditary air of fashion and freedom 
which bore the impress of nobility and distinction. 
There might, perhaps, be something of hauteur 
in his lofty bearing ; but it was so qualified by 
the sportive gaiety of his manners, that it seem- 
ed nothing more than that elegant and graceM 
sense of his own superiority, to which, even with- 
out arrogance, he could not be insensible. He 
talked much, and well, and in that general way, 
which allowed every one to take a part in the con- 
versation without suffering any one, not even the 
Earl, to monopolize it. Altogether, his presence 
was like sunshine upon frost-work, and an air of 
ease and gaiety succeeded to the dulness and 
constraint which had hitherto prevailed. Lady 


Betty had three times asked, " What brought 
you here at this time of night ?^ before Colonel 
Dehnour answered ; at last he said — 

*^ Two very powerftd motives, though scarce- 
ly fit to be named together— -the first was my ea- 
gerness to do homage here,^ bowing gracefully 
to Miss St Clair; *^ the other was to avoid the 
honour of driving Miss Pratt."" 

" I thought Mr Ljmdsay was to have return- 
ed with you,^ said the Earl. 

"^I offered him a seat in my cmrricle, which he 
wanted to transfer to Miss Pratt, but I could not 
possibly agree to that arrangement, so he remains 
like a preum chevaUer to escort her in a hackney<- 
chaise, and also, I believe, to attend a Bible meet- 
ing, or a charity sermon, or something of that 
sort. It is more, I suspect, as a paymaster than 
a protector, that his services are required, as she 
discovered it would cost her, I canH tell how ma- 
ny shillings and sixpences ; and though I would 
willingly have paid her expences, yet, reaUy, to 
endure her company for a nine mile tite^tite 
was more than my philosophy dreamt of.^ 

Much depends on the manner in which things 
are said as to the impression they convey to the 


unreflecting mind. Colonel Delmour^s voice and 
accent were uncommonly pleasing, and he had an 
air of gay good humour, that gave to his words 
rather the semblance of airy levity, than of sel- 
fishness or ill nature. Even when he carelessly 
sketched on the table-cloth a caricature of Mr 
Lyndaay with a large Bible under his arm, hand- 
ing Miss Pratt, with a huge bandbox in hers, in- 
to a hackney-chaise, Gertrude could not resist a 
smile at their expence. 

" Miss Pratt coming here to-morrow T ex- 
claimed the Earl in a tone expressive of any thing 
but pleasure ; ^^ that is somewhat an unexpect- 
ed^ and his Lordship made an effort as if to 

bolt some word too hard for utterance. Then ad- 
dressing Mrs St Clair, though with a very dis- 
turbed look, ^^ As, in all probability, Madam, 
that lady^s visit is designed out of compliment to 
you and your daughter, it is necessary, previous 
to her arrival, that you should be aware of the 
degree of relationship subsisting between Miss 
Pratt and the members of this family.*^ 

Lord Rossville^s air, looks, manner, hems, all 
portended a story ; it was but too evident that 
breath was collecting and reminiscences arrange 


ing for the purpose, and the pause that ensued, 
was prophetic, not, alas ! of its end, but of its be-^ 
ginning. But Colonel Dehnour seemed quite 
aware of the danger that was impending, and just 
as his uncle had opened his mouth with ^^ Miss 
Pratt^s great-grandfather^— —« he interposed. 

'* I beg pardon, but I cannot think of deTolT<> 
ing the task of being Miss Pratt^s chronicler up- 
on you; as I was guilty of introducing her to the 
company, mine be the punishment of becoming 
her biographer.*** Then, with a rapidity which left 
the Earl with his mouth open, and Miss Pratt^s 
great-grandfather still vibrating on his tongue, 
he went on— 

** Miss Pratt, then, by means of great-grand*^ 
fethers and great-grandmothers, (who, par pa^ 
renthSse, may commonly be classed under the 
head of great bores,) is, somehow or other, cousin 
to all families of distinction, in general, through- 
out Scotland, but to this one, £rom its local ad- 
vantages, in particular. I cannot pretoid to show 
forth the various modifications of which cousin- 
ship is susceptible,.first, second, and third degrees, 
as &r as numbers and degrees can go. And, in- 
deed, I have already committed a great error in 


my outset, by having introduced Miss Pratt by 
herself Miss Pratt, when I ought to have present- 
ed her as Miss Pratt and Anthony Whyte. In 
fact, as Whittington without his cat would be no- 
body in the nursery, so neither would Miss Pratt be 
recognized in the world without Anthony Whyte. 
Not that there exists the same reciprocal attach- 
ment, or unity of fortune, between the aunt and 
the nephew which distinguished the master and 
his cat ; for Anthony Whyte is rich, and Miss 
Pratt is poor ; — Anthony Whyte lives in a castle, 
Miss Pratt in a cottage ; — Anthony Whyte has 
horses and hounds, Miss Pratt has clogs and pat- 
tens. There is something so uninteresting, if not 
unpromising, in the name, that^ — addressing him- 
self to Miss St Clairr— " you, at present, will 
scarcely care whether it belongs to a man or a cat, 
^d will be ready to exclaim, ^ What^s in a name ?^ 
but do not expect long to enjoy this happy 
state of indifference— by dint of hearing it repeat- 
ed day after day, hour after hour, minute after 
minute, upon every posigible and impossible occa^ 
sion, it will at length take such hold of your 
imagination, that you will see the mystic letters 
which compose the name of Anthony Whyte 


wherever you turn your eyes — ^you will be ready 
to ^ hollow out his name to the reverberate rocks, 
and teach the babbling gossips of the air to cry 
out' — ^Anthony Whyte !'' 

'^ What's all that nonsense?'' asked Lady 

" I have been rather prosy upon Miss Pratt 
and her adjunct — ^that's all," answered Colonel 
Delmour slightly ; ^' and must have something to 
put away the sound of Anthony Whyte"— and he 
hummed a few notes — *^ Do, Miss St Clair, join 
me in expelling those hideous names I have in- 
voked for your gratification — ^you sing, I am 

But Gertrude was afi-aid to comply, for no one 
seconded the request. Lord Rossville, indeed, 
looked evidently much displeased ; but it was no 
less manifest, that his nephew neither thought nor 
cared for any body's feelings but such as he was 
solicitous to please ; and, before the party broke 
up, he had contrived to make a very favourable 
impression on the only person present whose fa- 
vour he was anxious to obtain. 



" Her tongue ions round like a wheel, one spoke after ano« 
ther ; there is no end of it. You would bonder at her matter to 
hear her talk, and would admire her taUc when you hear her 
matter. All the wonder is, whilst she speaks only thrums, how 
she makes so many different ends hang together." 

Richard Fleckko, 1658. 

ManIt yisitors anrived the two foUowiBg days 
from various quarters, though all frx>m simHar mo- 
tires, viz. to see the young heiress and her jde- 
beian mother. But amongst all the varieties of 
life, how few can even serve ^^ to point a moral or 
adorn a tale.^ 

The most distinguished of those individuals 
were Lady Millbank and her daughters, who 
drove up in all the bustle and parade of a 
barouche and four, splendidly emblazoned, with 
drivers and riders in the full pomp of blazing 
liveries, and the usual eclat of an equipage 
which at once denotes wealth and grandeur. 

CHAPTER Villi 73 

The ladies were in the same style with their out- 
ward bearingis^ taD, showy, dashing personages, 
with scornful looks and superdlioiis manners. 
They surveyed Miss St Clair from head to foot 
with a bold stare ; and, after making some trifling 
remarks to her, turned their whole artillery against 
Colonel Delmour, who received their addresses, 
with a sort of careless familiarity, very diflerent 
from the refined attentions he displayed towards 
his cousin. 

" Good heavens !^ exclaimed one of the ladies, 
who had stationed herself at a window, ^^ Do look 
at this, Colonel Delmour !" 

And at the piercing exclamation, the whole 
party hastened to ascertain the cause. The phe« 
Bomenon appeared to be a hackney-chaise of the 
meanest description, which was displacing the 
splendid barouche, to the manifest mirth of the 
insolent menials who stood lounging at the door. 

** Who can that be, I wonder ?'* asked Lady 

Mrs St Clair turned pale with terror lest it 
should be any of her bourgeois relations fordng 
their way. 

^^ I conclude it must be our cousin Miss Pratt,^ 


said the Earl, in some agitation, to Lady Mill- 
bank; and, while he spoke, a female head and 
hand were to be seen shaking and waving to the 
driver with eager gesticulation. 

" And Mr Lyndsay, I vow !'' exclaimed Miss 
Jemima Millbank, throwing herself into a theatri- 
cal attitude of astonishment. 

The hack-chaise, with its stiff rusty horses, had 
now got close to the door, and the broken jingling 
steps being lowered, out stepped a young man, 
who was immediately saluted with shouts of laugh- 
ter from the party at the window. He looked up 
and smUed, but seemed nowise disconcerted, as 
he stood patiently waiting for his companion to 

" I hope they are to perform quarantine,'' said 
Colonel Delmour. 

" I vote for their being sent to Coventry,'' said 
Miss Augusta. 

" I prepare to stand upon the defensive," said 
Miss Maria, as she seized a smelling-bottle from 
off the table. 

At length. Miss Pratt appeared, shaking the 
straw from her feet, and having alighted, it was 
expected that her next movement would be to en- 


ter the house ; but they knew little of Miss Pratt, 
who thought all was done when she had reached 
her destination. Much yet remained to be done, 
which she would not trust either to her compaoion 
or the servants. She had, in the first place, to 
speak in a very sharp manner to the driver, on 
the condition of his chaise and horses, and to 
throw out hints of having him severely punished, 
inasmuch as one of his windows would not let 
down, and she had almost sprained her wrist in 
attempting it — and another would not pull up, 
though the wind was going through her head like 
a spear ; besides having taken two hours and a 
quarter to bring them nine miles, and her watch 
was held up in a triumphant manner in proof of 
her assertion. She next made it a point to see 
with her own eyes every article pertaining to her 
(and they were not a few) taken out of the chaise, 
and to give with her own voice innumerable direc- 
tions as to the carrying, stowing, and placing of 
her bags, boxes, and bundles. All these matters 
being settled. Miss Pratt then accepted the arm 
of her companion, and was now fairly on her way 
to the drawing-room. But people who make use 
of their eyes have often much to see even be- 


tween two doors, and in her progressr from the 
hall door to the drawing-room door. Miss Pratt 
met with much to attract her attention. True, 
all the objects were perfectly familiar to her, but 
a real looker^ like a great genius, is never at a 
loss for a subject — things are either better or 
worse since they saw them last-H)r if the things 
themselves should happen to be the same, they 
have seen other things either better or worse, and 
can, therefore, either improve or difi5)rove them; 
Miss Pratf s head then, turned from side to sid^ 
a thousand times as she went along, and a thou- 
sand observations and criticisms about stair car- 
pets, patent lamps, hall chairs, slab tables, &c. 
&c. 8z;c. passed through her crowded brain. At 
length. Miss Pratt and Mr Lyndsay were an- 
nounced, and thereupon entered Miss Pratt in a 
quick paddling manner, as if in all haste to greet 
her friends. 

'* How do you do, my Lord ? no bilious attacks 
I hope of late ? — Lady Betty, as stout as ever I 
see, and my old friend Flora as fat as a collared 
eel. — ^Lady Millbank, I'm perfectly ashamed to 
see you in any house but your own ; but every 
thing must give way to the first visit, you know^ 


especially amongst kinsfolk,^ taking Mrs St Clair 
by the hand, without waiting for the ceremony of 
an introduction. 

While this and much more in the same strain 
was passing with Miss Pratt, at one end of the 
room, Mr Lyndsay had joined the younger part 
of the company at the other, and been introdu- 
ced by Colonel Delmour to Miss St Clair. There 
was nothing so striking in his appearance as to 
arrest the careless eye, or call forth instant ad- 
miration ; yet his figure, though not much above 
the middle size, was elegant, his head and fea- 
tures were finely formed, and altogether he had 
that sort of classical totimurey which, although 
not conspicuous, is uncommon, and that air of 
calm repose which indicates a mind of an elevat- 
ed cast. Still, seen beside Colonel Delmoui^, Mr 
Lyndsay might have been overlooked. He had 
nothing of that brilliancy of address which dis- 
tinguished his cousin ; but he had what is still 
more rare, that perfect simplicity of manner 
which borrows nothing from imitation ; and as 
some one has well remarked, few peculiarities are 
more striking than a total absence of all affecta- 
tion. Scarcely allowing time for the introduc- 


tion, Miss Millbank began in a tone intended to 
be very sympathetic. 

" How dreadfiilly you must have been bored 
to-day with la pativre Pratt I Good heavens ! 
how could you inflict such a penance upon your* 
self? Did you not find her most shockingly an- 
noying and dreadAilly tiresome ?^ 

^^ Annoying and tiresome to a certain degree, 
as every body must be who asks idle questions,^ 
answered Mr Lyndsay, with a smile, which, 
though very sweet, was not without a meanii^. 

The rebuff, if it was intended for such, wai^, 
however, lost upon his fair assailant. 

*^ Then, good heavens ! how could you bore 
yourself with her ?" 

" She was my mother^s Mend and relation,** 
relied he calmly. 

^^ Of all descriptions of entail, that of friends 
would be the most severe,'' said Colonel Del- 

'* O heavens ! what a shocking idea !" exclaim, 
ed the three Miss Millbanks in a breath. 

" What's the shocking idea, my dears ?" de- 
manded Miss Pratt, as she pattered into the 
midst of the groupe. " I'm sure there's no 


sbocking realities here, for I never saw a pret- 
tier circle,'' darting her. eyes all round, while she 
faipiliarly patted Miss St Clair, and drawing 
her arm within hers, as she stood by the window, 
seemed resolved to appropriate her entirely to 
herself. Gertrude's attention was no less excited 
by Miss Pratt, who had to her all the charms of 
novelty, for though there are many Miss Pratts 
in the world, it had never been her fortune to 
meet with one till now. 

Miss Pratt then appeared to her to be a per- 
son from whom nothing could be hid. Her eyes - 
were not by any means fine eyes — ^they were not 
reflecting eyes — they were not soft eyes — ^they 
were not sparkling eyes — ^they were not melting 
eyes — they were not penetrating eyes ;-— neither 
were they.restiess eyes, nor rolling eyes, nor 
squinting eyes, nor prominent eyes — ^but they 
were active, brisk, busy, vigilant, immoveable 
eyes, that looked as if they could not be surpris- 
ed by any thing — not even by sleep. They 
never looked angry, or joyous, or perturbed, or 
melancholy, or heavy; but morning, noon, and 
night, they shone the same, and conveyed the 


same impression to the beholder, viz. that they 
were eyes that had a look — not like the look of 
Steme^s monk, beyond this world-^but a look in- 
to all things on the face of this world. Her other 
features had nothing remarkable in them, but the 
ears might evidently be classed under the same 
head with the eyes — ^they were something resem- 
bling rabbits — ^long, prominent, restless, vibrating 
ears, for ever listening, and never shut by the 
powers of thought. Her voice had the tone and 
inflexions of one accustomed to make frequent 
sharp interrogatories. She had rather a neat com- 
pact figure, and the tout ensemble of her person 
and dress was that of smartness. Such, though 
not quite so strongly defined, was the sort of im- 
pression Miss Pratt generally made upon the be- 
holder. Having darted two or three of her sharp- 
est glances at Miss St Clair — 

" Do you know I'm really puzzled, my dear, 
to make out who it is you are so like — ^for youVe 
neither a Rossville nor a Black — and, by the bye, 
have you seen your imcle, Mr Alexander Black, 
yet ? What a fine family he has got, I heard 
you was quite smitten with Miss Lilly Black at 


the Circuit ball Mother night, Colonel Delmour— 
But you're not so ill to please as Anthony Why te 
— That was really a good thing Lord Punme- 
down said to him that night. Looking at the 
two Miss Blacks, says he to Anthony, with a 
shake of his head — * Ah, Anthony,' says he, ' 
* Tm afraid two Blacks will never make a White !' 
ha ! ha! ha! — Lord Rossville, did you hear that P 
At the Circuit ball Lord Punmedown said to 
Anthony Whyte, poin^Jag to the two Miss 
Blacks — * I fear,' says/^e, * two Blacks will never 
make a White.' — * l/o, my Lord,' says Anthony, 
^ for you know theifi^'s no turning a Blackamoor 
white !' ha ! ha ! hf^ r * A very fair answer,' says 
my Lord. Lady /viillbank, did you hear of Lord 
Punmedown's attack upon Mr Whyte at the 
ball — ^the two Miss Blacks——" 

** I blackball a repetition of that bon mot," 
said Colonel Delmour. 

** You will really be taken for a magpie if you 
are so black and white," said Miss Millbank. 

** 'Pon my word, that's not at all amiss — I 
must let Anthony Whyte hear that. — But bless 
me. Lady Millbank, you're not going away al- 
ready ? — ^won't you stay and take some luncheon ? 

VOL. 1. F 


--*I can answer for the soups here—I leaUy think^ 
my Lord, you rival the Whyte Hall soups ^'^ 
but disregarding Miss Pratt^s pressing invitations 
Lady MiUbank and her train took l^ave, and 
scarcely were they gone wheii luncheon w%8 {un- 

" Come, my dear,'' resumed ih§ torm^ute^, 
holding Grertrude's arm within hers, ^< let you 
and I keep together — I want to get better ac* 
quainted with you — ^but I wish I CQuId find a 
likeness for you'"— ^-looking round upon the &mi^ 
ly portraits as they entered ^he eating-room. 

^^ They must look higher who would find a 
similitude for Miss St Clair,'' said Colonel Del- 

Miss Pratt glanced at the paints ceiling 
representing a band of very fat, AilUblowii rosy 
Hours. ^^ Ah ha ! do you hear that, my Lord? 
Colonel Delmour says there's nothing on earth 
to compare to Miss St Clair, and that we must 
look for her likeness in the r^ons above. Well, 
goddess or not, let m^ recommend a bit of this 
nice cold lamb to you — ^very sweet and tender it 
is*— imd I assure you Pm one of those who think 
a leg of lamb looks as well on a table as in a 

CHAPTER vm. 83 

meadow :^—-then dropping her knife and fork 
with a start of joy— -^^ Bless me, what was I 
thinking of? — that was really very well said of 
you, Colonel — ^but IVe got it now— a most won- 
derfol resemblance ! See who^U be the next to 
find it out ?"* 

All present looked at each other, and then at 
(he pictures. 

Lord Rossville, who had been vainly watching 
for an opening, now took advantage of it, and 
with one of his long suppressed sonorous hems, 
bespoke him as follows :— • 

<^ Although I have not given much of my 
time or attention to the study of physiognomy, 
as I do not conceive it is one likely to be pro* 
ductive of beneficial results to society ; yet I do 
not hesitate to admit the reality of those anal(^ 
gies of feature which may be, and undoubtedly 
are^ distinctly traced through successive genera- 
tions — the fiunily mouth, for example,^ pointing 
to a long-chinned pinky-eyed female, with a 
pursed up mouth hanging aloft, ^^ as pourtrayed 
in that most exemplary woman, the Lady Janet St 
Clair, has its prototype in that of my niece,^ 
turning to Gertrude ; <^ while, in the more manly 

84. THE inheritance;. 

formed nose of Robert first Earl of Rossville, an 
accurate physiognomist might discern the root, as 
it were "" 

" My dear Lord Rossville r exclaimed Miss 
Pratt, throwing herself back in her chair, ^'I 
hope you'^re not going to say Miss St Clair has 
the nose of Red Robby, as he was called — ^root, 
indeed ! — a pretty compliment ! If it was a root, 
it must have been a beet root— ^as Anthony 
Whyte says, it^s a nose like the handle of a pump- 
well — and as for Lady Janet^s mouth — he says 
if s neither more nor less than a slit in a poorV 

" Mr Anthony Whyte takes most improper li- 
berties with the family of St Clair, if he pre- 
siunes to make use of such unwarrantable, such 
imjustifiable — I may add, such ungentlemanly — 
expressions towards any of its members,'' said 
Lord Rossville, speaking faster in the heat of 
his indignation ; ^^ and it is mortifying to reflect, 
that any one allied to this family should ever 
have so far forgot what was due to it as to form 
such coarse, and vulgar, and derogatory compa- 

^^ One of them is rather a flattering compari- 


son,^ said Mr Lyndsay ; ^^ I^m afraid there are 
few mouths can be represented as emblems of 

«Very well said, Mr Edward,'' said Miss 
Pratt, nowise disconcerted at the downset she 
had received ; shall I send you this nice rib in 
return ? — Lord Rossville, let me recommend the 
rhubarb tart to you — Miss Diana, my dear-— 
I beg your pardon. Miss St Clair, but I'll really 
never be able to call you any thing but Diana — 
for such a likeness ! — What have you all been 
thinking of, not to have found out that Miss St 
Clair is the very picture of the Diana in the Yel- 
low Turret ?" 

Lord Rossville, in a tone of surprise and dis- 
pleasure, repeated, — 

" The Diana in the Yellow Turret ! impossi- 
ble !" 

<^ Impossible or not, I can assure you it's the 
fact. — Mrs St Clair, have you seen the Diana ? — 
come with me, and I'll show it you — come, my 
dear, and see yourself as a goddess— come away 
•-Hseeing's believing, my Lord." And she jump- 
ed up, almost choking in her eagerness to display 
tibe discovery she had madei 

86 THE 11^H£R1TANC£. 

*^ Miss Pratt I"" cried the Earl) in a tone 
enough to have settled quicksilver itself, ^^ Miss 
Pratt, this behaviour of yours is — ^is — ^what I 
cannot possibly permit — ^the Yellow Turret is my 
private dressing-room, and it is surely a most im- 
proper and unwarrantable liberty - ^ 

^' I beg you ten thousand pardons, my dear 
Lord Rossville ! — I really had quite forgot the 
change you have made in your dressing-room ; 
but, at any rate, I would have figured every 
creek and comer of yours fit to be seen at all 
times.— There^s Mr Whyte — ^his dressing-room 
is a perfect show, so neat and nick-nacky, his 
silver shoe-horn would be an omunent to any 

" Miss Pratt, this is really— —I——," and 
his Lordship hemmed in a manner which showed 
the greatest discomposure. 

'^ As we cannot be gratified with a sight of Mr 
Whyte^s shoe-horn," said Colonel Delmour, " it 
would certainly be some solace to be allowed to be* 
hold your Lordship^s goddess ;— -I had forgot that 
picture, it is so long since I have seen it— but I 
should certainly wish to prostrate myself at her 
shrine now " And he looked to Miss St Clair 


a« he spoke^ in a maimer to give more meaning 
to his words than met the ear. 

The Earl was tnuch embarrassed; He was 
provoked at the irreverent and indecorous man* 
ner in which Miss Pratt had been going to rush 
into his dressing-room ; and he was piqued at the 
insinuation she had thrown out of its not being 
fit to be seen. He therefore wavered betwixt his 
desire of punishing her presumption by exclusion 
•'—or vindicating his own character by instant and 
unpremeditated admission. After maturely weigh- 
ing the matter^ he decided upon the latter mode of 
proceeding, and i^aid, — 

** Although I have certainly no idea of per- 
mitting my private apartments to be thrown open 
whenever idle or impertinent, or, it may be, ill- 
disposed curiosity might prompt the wish, yet I 
do not object to gratify either my own family 
and friends, or even the public in general, with 
a view of them, when the request is properly con- 
veyed, and at a proper and reasonable hour ; for, 
if there is a time for everything, it should like- 
wise be remembered, there is a manner for every- 
thing ; and although I do not consider a gentle- 
man'*s dressing-room as the most elegant and de- 


licate exhibition for ladies, yet, upon this occa- 
sion, if they are so inclined,^ — bowing all round 
»-'* I shall be happy to conduct them to my pri- 
vate apartments.^ 

" The sooner the better,'' cried Miss Pratt, 
while the very ribbons on her bonnet seemed to 
vibrate with impatience ; ^^ Come, my dear, and 
see yourself as a goddess ;'" and again seizing Miss 
St Clair, away she pattered full speed. 

^^ There's a broom where a broom shouldn't 
be," darting her eyes into the dart comer of a 
passage as she whisked through it ; then peeping 
into a closet, ^^ and for all the work he makes, I 
don't think his maids are a bit better than other 



" What doth he get who ere prefers 
The scutcheon of his ancestors ? 
This chimney-piece of gold or brass | 
That coat of arms bhizon*d in gUss ; 
When these with time and age have end, 
Thy prowess must thyself commend ; 
True nobleness doth those alone engage. 
Who can add virtues to their parentage." 

Mttdmay Ftine Earl of fVetimorland* 

Upon entering the turret, the first thing that 
caught Miss Pratt^s eye was a shaving glass, 
which she asserted was by no means the proper 
size and shape for that purpose, being quite differ.- 
ent from the one used by Anthony Why te, which 
was broader than it was long, while Lord Boss.. 
Tillers was longer than it was broad. A dispute, 
of course, ensued, for the Earl would not be 
^learded upon such a subject by any woman — 
when, suddenly giving him the slip in the argu-» 
ment, she exclaimedii ^^ But bless me, weVe forgets 


ting the Diana — and what a bad light youVe put 
her in ! There^s a great art in hanging pictures ; 
Mr Whyte brought a man all the way from Lon- 
don to hang his ; and I^U never forget my fright 
when he told me the hangman was coming.-^ 
Now I see her where 1 stl^nd-^Mrs St Clair, 
come a little more this way — ^there now — ^was there 
eyer such 9 likeness ?^ 

'< Astonishing r exclaimed Mrs St Clair in 

^^ Diana never had such incense ofikred to her 
before,^ said Colonel Delmour. 

** The resemblance, if, indeed, there is a re- 
semblance,^ said the Earl in manifest displeasure, 
^ is extremely imperfect ; the portriat represelits 
a considerably larger and more robust-looking ji^t^ 
son than Miss St Clair ; it has also something ijit 
a bold and masculine air, which, I own, I should 
be sorry to perceive in any yotmg lady in whMi 
I take any iiiterefit, dnce nothing, in my opitiion, 
derogates so much from female loveliness as a for*, 
ward or presuming carriage.'" 

" My dear Lord Rossville ! how any body, Whtf 
has eyes in their head, can dispute that resem^- 
blance^ust turn tound, my dear, and shorw ydu^« 

chapteh IX. 91 

self^^'.^to Misd St Clair, irho, ashamed of the 
dcnitiny, had turned away, and was conversittg 
with Colonel Delmour a little apart. Mr Lynd** 
say contemplated the picture with a thoughtful 
air, and occasionally stole a glance at Gertrude, 
but said nothing. 

** How do you account for such an extraordi- 
nary likeness P"^ inquired Lady Betty of Mrs St 
Clab, as she stood, with her fat Flora under her 
arm, staring at the picture. 

^^ I am quite at a loss — ^if this picture is an 
ideal creation of the painter^s imagination-^— ^^ 

** It^s not that, I can assure you,^ interrupted 
Miss Pratt — ^< the original was a real flesh and 
blood living person, or Tve been misinformed,^ 
*-^ith a look of interrogation to Lord Ros6ville< 

'* If one of the family, however remote, the re- 
semblance, as Lord Rossville justly remarked^ doeil 
sometimes revive, even at distant periods, in ih^ 
person o f '-- ■ ■ T hut Mrs St Clair did not get 
leave to finish her sentence. 

<< O if Diana had been a St Clair^ there would 
have been no wonder in the matter^ you know T 
again dashed in the intolerable Pratt ; ^' but the 
truth of the m«tter is» she was neither more nor 


less than bonny Lizzie Lundie, the huntsman^s 
daughter. ^^ Much IVe heard about Lizzie 
Lundie, and many a fine song was made upon 
her^ for she was the greatest beauty in the coun- 
try, high or low, There^s one of the songs that^ft 
all the fashion now, that I remember singing 
when I was young, but they've changed the name 
from Lundie to Lyndsay,^ and Miss Pratt, in k 
cracked and immusical voice, struck up, 

•' Will ye go to the Hielands, Leezy Lyndsay," &c. 

Lord Rossville seemed somewhat disconcerted at 
this abrupt disclosure of his Diana's humble pe- 
digree, and anxious to accoimt for Lizzie Liin- 
die, the huntsman's daughter, being permitted a 
place amongst the nobles of the land, and that too 
in his private apartment ; he, therefore, made all 
possible haste to atone for this solecism in digni- 
ty, and having hemmed three times, began — 

^^ Since this picture has attracted so much at- 
tention, and called forth so much animadversion; 
it is proper, and, indeed, necessary^ that some elu- 
cidation should be thrown on the circumstances 
to which it owes its births" 

And again the Earl paused, hemmed, and look- 


ed round, like a peacock spreading its plumage, 
and straining its neck in all directions, before it 
can even lift the crumb that has been thrown to 
it— while Miss Pratt, like a pert active sparrow, 
taking advantage of its attitudes, darts down and 
bears off the prize. 

** O the story's soon told, for there's no great 
mystery about it. The late Lord there,'' point- 
ing to a picture of a fat chubby gentleman in a 
green coat, hunting-horn, and bag-wig, ^^ was.a 
second Nimrod in his young days, and had a per^ 
feet craze for dogs and horses ; and he brought a. 
famous painter here from some place abroad, I for- 
get the name of it now, to take the beasts' like- 
nesses— ^as old Lady Christian used to say, it was 
a scandal to think of dogs sitting for their pic- 
tures — ^ha ! ha ! ha ! — In particular, there was a. 
famous pack of hounds to sit, and the painter 
chancing to see Lizzie one day with them about 
her, was struck with the fancy of doing her as a 
Diana, and it was really a good idea, for I think 
she's the outset of the picture — ^Anthony Why te 
says he would give a hundred guineas merely for 
her head and shoulders." 

Mrs St Clab had changed colour repeatedly 


during this piece of biography, and seemed not 
a little mortified at discovering that her daugb- 
ter> beauty claimed no higher original than the 
buntsman^s daughter. Upon a more close inspect 
tioQ) she, therefore, declared, that although there 
might be something in the tout emembh to catch 
the eye at first sight, yet, upon examination, it 
would be found the features and expression were 
totally different. 

But Lord Rossville, resolved not to be baulked 
of his story, now commenced a more diffuse nar- 
ffttive of the drcumstances to which Lizade Lun^. 
die owed her posthumous fame, concluding with 
his most unqualified dissent as to the possibility 
of there beii^ the slightest resemblance except in 
the colour of the hair. But to do Miss Pratt 
justice, the resemblance was yery remarkable. 
The Diana^s features were on a larger scale, and 
her countenance had a less soft and intellectual 
cast than Miss St Clair's ; her figure was also 
more robust than elegant, her complexion rather 
vivid than transparent, and her air rather bold 
than dignified ; but there was the same long-^^hap- 
ed, soft, dark-blue eyes, die same Grecian nose 
and mouth, the same silky, waving^ dark ring- 


letSj curling naturally around th^ op^n ivory fore- 
head, forming altogether that rare and peculiar 
gtyle of beauty where the utpioat delicacy of fea- 
ture is yet marked and expresgiTe, and the strong** 
est contrasts of colour are blended into one har- 
monious whole. 

" Pray, what became of this divinity ?** inquir- 
ed Colonel Delmour. 

^' Tin sure X can^t tell you a I think the story 
was, that sh9 had been crossed i|i love with some 
g^ndeman, and that ^e married a Highland dro- 
ver, or tacksman, I oan^t tell which, and they 
went all to sticks and staves.*^ 

^^ How provoking,^ said Colonel Delmour, as 
he still stood contemplating the picture, ^^ that 
so much beauty should have been created in vain.^ 

^ How do you know that it was created in 
vain ?^ said Mr Lyiidsay. 

'^ Considering how v^ry rmre a thing beauty, 
perfect beauty is, there certainly seems to have 
been rather a lavish expenditure of it on the 
huntsman's daughter* and drovef s wife.*' 

<* Colonel Delmour, don't ypu remember what 
the poet says OQ tlwt : 


* There's many a flower that's bom to grow unseen. 
And waste its beauty on the senseless air.' — 

** However rare beauty may be," said Mr 
Lyndsay, passing over Miss Pratt's mis-quota- 
tion, ^^ your desire of confining it to the higher 
orders is rather too arbitrary." 

"' They certainly can better appreciate it," re- 
turned Colonel Delmour ; ^^ there is a refinement 
of taste requisite to admire such beauty as that," 
and he glanced firom the Diana to Miss St Clair. 
** How could one of the canaille possibly compre- 
hend the fine antique cast of those features, the 
classic contour of the head, the swan-like throat, 
the inimitable moulding of the cheek ; would not 
a pair of round white eyes, and blowzy red cheeks, 
with a snub nose, and a mouth &om ear to ear, 
have been quite as well bestowed upon the dro- 

*^ I daresay he could not talk so scientifically 
on the subject as you do," said Mr Lyndsay; 
" but, for all that, he might have been as fond 
of his wife, and as proud of her too, as either you 
or I could have been." 

^^ Impossible — ^that is, supposing she had been 


of my own rank and station — ^not Venus hef self 
could have won me to a misatlicmce!^ 

^^ Suppose the huntsman's daughter had been 
as perfect in mind and manner as in person .^ 

** The idea is absurd — the thing is impossible,'' 
interrupted Colonel Delmour, impatiently. 

^^ It is certainly difficult to conceive refinement 
of manners in a person of low birth ; but why 
may not a noble mind be conferred on a peasant 
as well as on a prince ?'' 

** What !" cried Colonel Delmour, indignantly, 
^' do you really pretend to say that the offspring 
erf a clown or a mechanic — ^animals who have 
-walked the world in hob-nailed shoes, or sat all 
their lives cross-legged with their noses at a grind- 
ing wheel, can possibly possess the same \otty spi- 
rit as the descendants of heroes and statesmen ? 
The very thought of being so descended must ele- 
vate the mind, and give it a conscious superiority 
over the low-bom drudges of the earth." 

" Then you must feel yourself greatly superi- 
or in mind to Virgil, Horace, Shakespeare, MiL 
ton, Spenser, and a long et cetera of illustrious 
names down to the present day, who, if not abso- 
lutely low-bom, have yet no pretensions to high 

VOL. I. Q 


birth. For my own part, I think it is rather hum* 
bling than elevating to reflect on the titled imeig^ 
nificance of this very family, who, tibough possess- 
ed of honours, wealth, and power, fair centuries, 
has never produced one man eminent tor his vir- 
tues or his talents— nor, if we may trust to paint- 
ers, one female celebrated for such beauty as diis 
poor huntsman^s daughter.^ 

^^ You see her as a goddess, rememb^,^ said 
Colonel Delmour, ironically ; ^^ perhaps in her 
Uue flannel Jupany unsandalled feet, ^ and ker- 
chief, in a comely^ cotton gown, carryii^ a mess 
to the dogs^ die would have had fewer attractions 
even for your noble nature.^ 

^^ There is a taste in moral as well as in cor- 
poreal beauty,^ said Mr Lyndsay, ^^ and I can 
love and admire both for their own intrinsic me- 
rits, without the aid of ornament You, Dehnour, 
must have them in court dress, widi stars and 
coronets — but with beauty such as that,^"^ and his 
eye unconsciously rested on Gertrude ; ^^ had 
the mind, principles, and manners corresponded 
to it,. I could have loved even Lizzie Lundie— 
perhaps too well.*^ 

^' Had the huntsman's daughter been an angel 


and a goddess in one^^ replied Colonel Delmonr 
warmly, '* I never could have thought of her as 
my wife^-there is degradation in the very idea.'' 

All this while Miss Pratt had, as usual, be^i 
gabbling to the rest of the party, in a manner 
which prevented their hearing or joining in this 
argument. Miss St Clair, indeed, had contrived 
to pick up a little of it, and warmly adopted Co- 
lonel Delmour'^s sentiments on the subject. 

^^ I wonder what became of Lizzie's family, for 
I think always I heard she had a daughter as 
great a beauty as herself — IVe a notion it was a 
dau^ter of hers M rs St Clair, are you well 
enough ?— Bless my heart, she's going to faint P 

All crowded round Mrs St Clair, who seemed, 
indeed, on the point of fainting — ^the windows 
were thrown open — water was brought — smelling- 
bottles applied — till, at length, she revived, and, 
with a faint smile, avowed that she had been in- 
disposed for some days, and was subject to spasms 
of that nature. Lord Rossville bent over his 
sister-in-law, as she sat at the open window, with 
the utmost solicitude — ^he felt really interested in 
her, for she had listened to him with the most 
unceasing attention, and without once interrupt- 


ing hmi — ft degree of deference he was fittk ac- 
customed to in his own fionily. At length she 
declared herself perfectly reoovered, and, sup- 
ported hy his Lorddup and her daughter, she re- 
tired to her own apartment. 

« That was an mdacky remark ct joors. 
Colonel, aboat low marriages,^ whispered Miss 
Pratt ; << I really think it was that overset her 
•^though I suspect Lizzie Lnndie had some- 
thing to do with it too ; very likely some relation- 
ship thei%, for you know the Blacks are not just 
at the top of the tree,^— with a knowing wink ; 
*^ that, and the smell of Lord Rossville^s boots 
and shoes together, was really enough to overset 
her ;^ but Miss Pratt was now left to gabble to 
herself, for the rest of the party had dispersed. 



I cannot blame thee, 
Who am myself attached with wearinen 
To the duUing of my spirits. 


*^ How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable, 
seem to me all the uses of this world,^ is a feel- 
ing that must be more or less experienced by 
every one who has feeling enough to distinguish 
one sensation from another, and leisure enough for 
ennui. There are people, it is well known, who 
have no feelings, and there are others who have 
not time to feel — ^but, alas ! there are many whose 
misfortune it is to have feeling and leisure, and 
who have time to be nervous — ^have time to be dis- 
contented — ^have time to be unhappy — ^have time 
to feel ill used by the world — ^have time to weary 
of pleasure in every shape — to weary of men, 
women, and children«-to weary of books, grave 


and witty — ^to weary of authors, and even of 
authoresses-^-^md who would have wearied as 
much of the wit of a Madame de Stael as of the 
babbles of Miss Pratt. 

In this disposition, perhaps the only solace is 
to find some tangible and lawftd object of which 
to weary — some legitimate source of ennui, and 
then " sweet are the uses of adversity ,** when 
they come, even in the questionable shape of a 
Miss Pratt. In the hum-drum society of a dull 
county, what a relief to the weary soul to have 
some person to weary of ! To have a sort of bag-^ 
fox to turn out, when firesh game catmot be had^ 
is an enjoyment which many of my readers have 
doubtless experienced. Such was Miss Pratt*— 
every body wearied of her, or said they wearied 
of her, and every body abused her, while yet she 
was more sought after and asked about, than she 
would have been had she possessed the wisdom of 
a More, or the benevolence of a Fry. She was, in 
fact, the very heart of the shire, and gave life 
and energy to all the pulses in the parish. She 
supplied it with streams of gossip and chit-chal 
in others, and subject of ridicule and abuse 
in herself. Even the dullest laird had some- 


thing good to tell of Miss Pratt, and some- 
thing bad to say of her— for nothing can convey 
a more opposite meaning than these apparent sy^ 

' But there was no one to whom Miss Pratt was 
80 unequivocal a pest as to Lord Rossville, for 
hi^ Lordship was a stranger to e9»ne^^— perhaps 
cause and efPect are rarely combined in one per- 
son, and those who can weary others, possess a 
never-failing source of amusement in themselves. 
Besides, the Earl was independent of Miss Pratt, 
ad he possessed a wide range for his unwearying 
wearying powers in his own family ; for he could 
weary his steward— and his housekeeper— and 
his gamekeeper — and his coachman — ^and his 
^oom — ^and his gardener, alt the hours of the 
day, by perpetual fault-finding and directing. 
Perhaps, after all, the only uncloying pleasure 
in life is that of finding fault. The gamester may 
weary of his dice — ^the lover of his charmer— 
the bofir-vivafU of his bottle — ^the virtuoso of his 
virtii— but while this round world remains with all 
its imperfections on its head, the teal fault-find- 
er will never weary of finding fault. 'jThe provok- 
ing part of Miss Pr^^tt was, that th^e was no pos- 


sibility of finding fault with her. As well might 
Lord Rossville have a^ttempted to admonish the 
brook that babbled past him, or have read lectures 
to the fly which buzzed round his head. For forty 
years Lord Kossville had been trying to break her 
in, but in vain. Much may be done, as we every 
day see, to alter and overcome nature : Poneys 
are made to waltz — ^horses to hand tea-kettles-— 
dogs to read — ^birds to cast accounts — fleas to walk 
in harness; but to restrain thevolubility of afemale 
tongue, is a task that has hitherto defied the 
power of man. With so much of what may be 
styled dissonance in similarity, it may easily be 
imagined, that Lord Rossville and Miss Pratt, 
even when most in unison, produced any thing 
but harmony. Yet they only jarred— they ne- 
ver actually quarrelled, for they had been accus- 
tomed to each other all their lives — and while she 
laid all the rebufis and reproofs she received to 
the score of bile, he tolerated her impertinence on 
account of blood. 

.The softness and suavity of Mrs St Claires 
manners formed so striking a contrast to «the 
sharp gnat-like attacks of Miss Pratt, that Lord 
Rossville became every day mere attached to his 


sister-in-law's company, and she soon found ber- 
s^lf so firmly fixed in his good graces, that she 
ventured to request permission that she and her 
daughter might be allowed to visit her relations, 
with whom she had hitherto only communicated 
by letter. 

" Certainly, my dear Madam,^^ replied the 
Earl i ^^ nothing can be more proper and reason- 
able than that you should recognize and visit the 
different members of your own family, who, I am 
happy to think, are all persons of imblemished re- 
putation, and respectable stations in life, which 
respectability is in a fair way of being increased 
by votes which, I understand, an uncle and bro- 
ther of yours have lately acquired in the county; 
and as there is every appearance of our having a 
warmly contested election shortly, their political 
influence, if properly directed, cannot fwl of prov- 
ing highly beneficial to them. I therefore give 
my unqualified assent as to the propriety of your 
visiting your own family, as soon as we can ar- 
range the proper time, mode, and manner of do- 
ing -so— but, with regard to the daughter of the 
Honourable Thomas St Clair, T must candidly 
acknowledge to you, my dear Madam, I have not 


yet brought my mind to any fixed detenniiuition 
on that point — ^your own good sense will natural- 
ly point out to you the very peculiar situation in 
which she stands. Miss St Clair is as present to 
be viewed as the heiress preatimptive to the 
titles, honours, and estates of this family ; but, 
observe, although preawnvptwe, she is by no 
means heiress apparen^-^or there is a wide and 
important distinction betwixt these apparent sy- 
nonyms.^ — Here his Lordship entered into a 
most elaborate explanation of these differences of 
distinction. — " And now, my dear Madam, I am 
sure you will agree with me, that, in a situation 
of such peculiar delicacy, every step which Miss 
St Clair takes ought to be weighed with the ut- 
most nicety and deliberation ; since what might be 
befitting the heiress presumptive might be deem- 
ed derogatory to the heiress apparent--and what 
dignity demands of the heiress apparent the world 
might censure as an undue assumption of conse- 
quence in the heiress presumptive.'' 

Mrs St Clair, though choking with indigna- 
tion at this round-about insinuation that her fa- 
mily was scarcely fit to be associated with, by her 
own daughter, yet repressed her indignation> and 



as she did not consider it of much consequence 
that she should accompany her on her iSrst visit, 
she readily yielded the matter with a good grace. 
But no sooner had she done so, than the Earl, as 
was often his custom, immediately tacked about, 
and took the opposite side of the argument. The 
result was, that Mrs and Miss St Clair should 
immediately proceed to visit the respective mem- 
bers of the Black family, and the EarFs travelling 
chariot-and-four, with all appliances to boot, was 
ordered out for the occasion. It was with a thrill 
of delight Mrs St Clair took her place in it^ and 
drove off in all the eclat of rank and state. 



Pictures like these, dear Madam, to design. 
Ask no firm hand, and no unerring line. 
Some wandering touches, some reflected light, 
Some flying stroke alone can hit Vm right 


Fearful anticipations mingled with Mrs St 
Claires natural affection, as she thought of the 
meeting with her own &mily. Its only mem- 
bers consisted of a brother — who, partly by in- 
dustry, partly by good fortune, had become the 
proprietor of a large tract of unimproved land in 
the neighbourhood — ^two unmarried sisters re- 
siding in the coimty town, and an old uncle from 
the East Indies, a half-brother of her mother^s, 
reported to be enormously rich. When she had 
left home, her brother was a mere raw unformed 
lad, but he was now an elderly man, the husband 
of a woman she had never seen, and the father of 
a numerous family. After quitting the noble do- 


midn of Rossville, the country gradually assumed 
a less picturesque appearance — crocks, woods, and 
rivers, now gave way to arable land, well-fenced 
fields, and well-filled bam-yards; while these, 
in turn, yielded to vast tracts of improveable land, 
thriving belts of young plantation, ring-stone 
dikes, and drains in all directions. 

It was in the midst of this scenery that Belle- 
vue stood pre-eminent. It was a showy, white- 
washed, winged-house, situated on the top of the 
hill, commanding an extensive view of **muirs 
and mosses many, O,'' with traces of cultivation 
interspersed, and which by many was considered 
as a very fine— and by all was styled a very com- 
manding prospect. A dazzling white gate, with 
spruce cannister lodge, opened upon a weU-gra- 
▼elled avenue which led to the mansion, surround- 
ed by a little smiling lawn, with a tuft of ev^- 
greens in the centre. On one hand appeared a 
promising garden wall ; on the other, a sdt of com- 
modious-looking farm-offices — every thing was in 
the highest order — all bespoke the flourishing 
gentleman farmer. The door was opened by a 
stout florid foot-boy, in flaunting livery, whose 
yellow locks seemed to stifien at sight of the 


irplendid equipage that met his yiew. The in* 
terrogatories, however, at length recalled him to a 
aense of duty ; and upon the question being put 
for the third time, whether his master or mis- 
tress were at home— he returned that cautions 
answer, which marks the wary well-tutored though 
perplexed menial, i. e. that he was not sure, but 
he would see. After an interval of about five mi- 
nutes, during which much opening and shutting 
of doors was heard, and many a head was seen 
peeping over blinds and from behind shutters, the 
prudent WiU returned with an invitation to the 
ladies to alight ; and, leading the way, he con- 
ducted to a well-fiimished, but evidently unin^ 
habited drawing-room, where he left them, with 
an assurance, that his mistress woidd be there in 
a minute. Many minutes, however, elapsed, dos- 
ing which the visitors were left to find amusement 
for themselves, which was no easy task where the 
materials were wanting. In such circumstances^ 
a fire is a never-failing resource-«-4f had we can 
stir it, if good we can enjoy it— but here was no 
fire, and the bright handsome stove was only to 
be admired for itself, and the proftision of white 
paper which filled it The carpet was covered^ 


die chaurs were in their wrappers, the screens were 
in bags— even the chimney-piece, that refiige of 
the weary, showed only two handsome girandoles. 
There were two portraits, indeed, large as life, 
hanging on each side of the fire-place, in all the 
rawness of bad painting, glaring in tints which 
Time himself could never mellow. The one, it 
might be presumed, was Mr Black, in a bright 
Hue coat, pure white waistcoat, and drooping 
Fall of Foyers4ooking neckcloth, holding a glove, 
and looking very sensible. The other, it might 
be inferred, was Mrs Black, sitting under a tree, 
in a yellow gown and ill put on turbau, smiling 
with aU her might, and both evidently bent upon 
putting all the expression they possibly could into 
their faces, by way of getting a good pennyworth 
for their money. 

At length the door opened, and Mrs Black, in 
propria persona^ entered, followed by a train of 
daughters. She was rather embonpoint^ with a 
fine healthy colour, clear blue eyes, and an open 
good-humoured expression of countenance — ^form- 
ing, altogether, what is expressively termed a 
comely woman, which, if it mean something less 
than beauty, is often more attractive. She had 


evidently been dressii^ for the occasion, as her 
govn seemed scarcely yet out of the fold, but look- 
ed like a thing apart from her, and had that inex- 
pressible air of constraint which gowns will have, 
when gowns are made things of primary import- 

Mrs Black welcomed her guests in a manner 
which, if it had nothing of the elegance of ton, 
was yet free from affecti^tion or pretension. She 
expressed her regret, that Mr Black should be 
from home ; but she had sent in search of him, 
and hoped he would soon cast tip. Mrs St Clair, 
resolving to be delightfrd, sat with her sister-in- 
law^s hand in herd's, and, with a face of the most 
affectionate interest, was presently deep in in- 
quiries as to the state of her family, the number 
of her children, their ages, sexes, names, pursuits, 
and so forth. The amount of the information 
she received was this : — Mrs Black was the mo- 
ther of eleven children living, and two dead ;»— 
her eldest daughter (who had just gone to take 
a walk) was going to be married, and her youngest 
to be weaned. It was thought a very good mar* 
riage for Bell, as Major Waddell had made a 
handsome fortune in the Company^s service, and 


Vas very well cimnected in the county^ being 
cousin-gennan to Sir William Waddell of W^ 
dell Mains, and very likely to succeed to him, if 
he was spared. He was also related to the Bogs 
of BoghaU, and the present Bogfaall had matried 
a daughter of Lord Fairacre''s, and their son waa 
going to stand for the county. Major Waddell, 
to be sure, was a good deal older than Bell ; bmt 
he had kept his health well in India, and though 
not a beauty, was very well-— at least, he pleas- 
ed Bell, and that was everything. Due congra- 
tulations were here offered by Mrs St Clair, with 
the customary remarks, of its being a pleasant 
and desirable thing for the first of a family to 
,&rm a respectable connection ; that any disparity 
of years was on the right side, &c. &c« &c. ; con* 
eluding with a request to be favoured with a sight 
of the young people* Mrs Black^s eyes beamed 
delight as she pulled the bell^ and gave orderd 
for the children to be brought, observing, at the 
same time, that they were sad romps, and seldom 
fit to be seen. Miss St Clair, meanwhile, was 
engaged with her cousins, pretty good-natured 
looking girls, one of whom talked much of balls^ 
and oiEcers, and poetry ; but as the children en- 

VOL. I. H 


tered, she sighed, and said, there was an end of 
all rational conyersation. The young Masters 
and Misses Black had all eyidently been prepar- 
ing for exhibition. They were fine, stout, faloo]»- 
Big, awkward creatures, with shining faces, and 
straight-combed, though rebellious-looking, hair 
-—while a smart cap, red eyes, and sour face, be- 
spoke the sufferings of the baby. Altogether 
they formed, wlKit is politely called, an uncom- 
mon fine family— they all made bows imd curt- 
fleys-*-walked with their toes in — stood with their 
fingers in their mouths— -and, in short, were a 
very fine fiunily. 0£ course, they were much 
commended and caressed by their new relations, 
till the entrance of Mr Black turned the atten- 
tion into another channel. Mr Black was the on- 
ly one of the family on whom the phenomenon of 
a carriage-and-four had produced no visible ef- 
fect ;-^he entered ill-dressed, overheated, and 
with a common,, even vulgar air — ^though, in re- 
dity, he was rather a good-looking man. Mrs 
St Clair had expected something of a scene at 
meetmg with her brother ; but he seemed to have 
no thoughts of any thing of the kind, for he re- 
ceived hifl sister with that look and manner of 


plain, hearty welcome, which showed that any 
thing of fine feeling would be completely thrown 
away. Yet his greeting was sufficiently afiSbc- 
tionate in its own blunt, h<Mnely kind. 

^^ It is a lo^og time dnce you and I have met, 
Sally,!" said he, as he seated himself beside hk 
fioster, with a child on each knee ; ^^ but you have 
kept your looks weD^-to be sure you haven^t had 
so large ft share of the evils of life as I have 
had,^ — looking round with evident pride and ex-' 
ultation on his offspring, and affecting to sigh at 
the same time. Mrs St Clair Bhock her head, 
and sighed too, but her mgh was a much better 
got up sigh than her brother^s— it said, or was in-* 
tended to say, ^^ Heaven only knows what I have 
suffered for that one !^ 

Mrs Black seemed to understand it, for she 
said, with a look of sympathy, — 

^' I^m sure an only child must be a great mis- 
fortune, and we have great reason to be thankfid, 
Mr Black, that so many of ours have been spar- 
ed.*" Then beckoning one of her daughters, she 
whispered some instructions to her, accompanied 
with a key. The young lady left the room, and 
in a few minutes the yellow-haired laddie enter* 


ed, bearing a massive silver tray, conveying the 
richest of cakes, and the strongest and sweetest of 
wines. As Miss St Clair threw back her bonnet 
to partake of the hospitalities, her uncle regarded 
her with more earnestness than good breeding, 
then glanced all round on his own offspring. 

^^ I^m trying if I can make out a likeness be^ 
twixt your daughter and my brats," said he to hi^ 
sister ; ^^ but I don'^t think she has much of a 
Black face." 

'^ She is thought to resemble her father's fa^ 
mily more than mine," replied Mrs St Clair, — 
colouring deeply, and looking rather displeased. 

" None of them that I have ever seen," re- 
tujned Mr Black ;-r" her father, if I remember 
right, had light hair and a flat face, and ^" 

" There is no end to arguing upon resem- 
blances," interrupted Mrs St Clair, rising hasti- 
ly ; " the general expression is sometimes very 
strong, when every feature is different ;"— ^and she 
was preparing to depart, when one of the child- 
ren, who was looking out at a window, exclaiki- 
ed, " Here's Bell and the Major !"i — and to de- 
part in the face of Bell and the Major was de- 
clared to be impossible ; so Mrs St Clair, though 

CMAPTEE Xt. 117' 

fretting at the delay, was obliged to await the en> 
trance of the lovers. 

Fortunately Miss Bell had no toilette duties to 
perform, for she was dressed for the Major in a 
fashionable gown made by MissSkrimpskirt of Tat- 
tleton, from a pattern of Miss Gorewell'^s in Edin- 
burgh, who had got it from Miss Fleecewell of 
London, who had had hers direct from Madame 
Chefdoeuvre of Paris. Miss Bell, therefore, felt 
Ho disheartening doubts as to her appearance; 
but firmly relying on the justness of her propor- 
tions, and the orthodox length of her waist, and 
breadth of her shoulders,' and strong in the con- 
sciousness of being flounced and hemmed up to 
the knees, she boldly entered, followed by her be- 
trothed. Miss Isabella Black was really a very 
pretty girl — she had a pretty figure, pretty fea- - 
tures, pretty hair, a pretty complexion, a pretty 
bonnet, a pretty shawl, pretty boots, and a pret- 
ty watch. But over all this prettiness was difius- 
ed an intolerable air of folly, afiectation, and con- 
ceit, which completely marred the effect of lier 

Major Waddell was a very passable sort of 
peffion for a nabob ;-The had a dingy bronze com- 


plexion, tawny eye&, tolerable teeth, and a long, 
wrinkled, smirking, baboonish physiognomy. 

**Why, Bell, we were afraid you had run 
away with the Major,^ said Mr Black, facetious- 
ly, addressing his daughter on her entrance. 

^^ That is a very odd speech, I think, papa, ta 
(me in my situation,^ said Miss Bell, affecting to 
look much disconcerted. 

'^ C<mie, come, here are no strangers, so there 
need be no secrets :*-*it is pretty well known that 
if you dotf t run away with the Major, the Major 
will run away with you some of these days.*" 

Here Mr Black laughed, and Mrs Black 
laughed, and all the Masters and Misses Blads, 
laughed loud and long, — awhile in the general 
laugh the fair bride, as if overwhelmed with con* 
fiision, took her cousin aside and whispered — 

" This is a very awkward scrape I am brought 
into by papa^s bluntness. It certainly was my in* 
tention to have announced the matter to my 
aunt and you at a proper time, but not just at 
present; so I must request as a particular favour, 
that you will say nothing about it at Rossville-* 
it is so very unpleasant to be the talk of the whole 
county upon an afl&ir of this kind, that the Ma<» 


jor and I had resolved to have it kept as quiet as 
possible. It was only yesterday he communicated 
it to Sir William Waddell, and he has not yet 
mentioned it to Lord Fairacre, or any of his other 

Mrs St Clair was too impatient to be gone, to 
allow any farther latitude for the lovers to show 
off^ but was again in the midst of leave-taking. 
Much was said about having a longer visit — of 
taking a family dinner— of spending a few days 
—of leaving Miss St Clair to spend a little time 
and get acquainted with her cousins ; and Mrs 
St Clair could only disengage herself from this 
well meant hospitality, by promising to take the 
earliest opportunity of repeating her visit ^^ I 
trust I may be excused from fetuming this ^sit,''- 
said Miss Bell, with a look of modest importance, 
^^ as in my situati<m I go no where at present.^ 

Escorted by Mr Black and the Major, and 
followed by the whole family, Mrs^ and Miss St 
Clair resumed their places in the carnag>e, and 
^ere soon driv^i beyond the precincts of BeHf vue. 
Their ne^t destination was to the hoU£^ of die 
Miss Blacks, in the county town, and th^re they 
were accordingly driven. 



Lulled in the countless chambers of the brain 
Our thoughts are linked by many a hidden chain. . 
Awake but one, and lo ! what myriads rise ! ^ 

F<ach stamps its image as the other flies ! 
Each) as the various avenues of sense. 
Delight or sorrow to the soul dispense, 
Brightens or fades ; yet all, with magic art. 
Control the latent fibres of the heart. 

Pkaauret of Memorjf. 

Therie: are few minds so cidlous as to revisit 
tbe scenes of their childhood without experiencing 
^me emotion. And whether these scenes lie in 
the crowded city, amidst all the coarse and ordi- 
nary objects of vulgar life, or in the lonely valley, 
with its green hiUs and its gliding stream — the 
same feelings swell the heart as the thoughts of 
the past rush over it ; for they speak to us of 
the careless days of our childhood, of the gay 
4rciam8 of our youth, of the transient pleasures of 
pur nrime, of the faded joys of our o\A age. They 


speak to us of parents now sleeping in the dust, 
of playfellows in a far distant land, of companions 
altered or alienated, of friends become as stran- 
gers, of love changed into indifference. They 
speak to us — ^it may be — of time mispent, of ta- 
lents misapplied, of waniings neglected, of bless- 
ings despised, of peace departed. They may speak 
to us, perchance, of God^s holy law slighted, of 
his precepts contemned, of himself forsaken— of 
hearts, alas ! not purified and renewed by that 
grace whose aid they never sought, but, like the 
wasted volcano, parched and blasted in their own 
unholy fires. Fairer scenes all may have viewed 
t^n those on which their eyes first opened, but 
in them we behold only the inanimate objects of 
nature, which, however th^ may charm the seises 
or fill the imagination, yet want that deep and 
powerAil interest which seems entwined with our 
esdstence, and which gives *^ a local habitation 
and a name^ so powerftd a mastery over us. 

Something too there is of solemn thought in 
returning to a father'^ hotise — ^whether that fa- 
therms arms are open to receive his long absent 
child, or whether the eye that would have wel- 
comed, and the tongue that would have blessed 


U8^ are now mouldering in the grave. Ah ! many 
are the wild tumultuous waves that roll over the 
human mind, and obliterate many of its fairest 
characters— -its fondest recollections. But still 
the indelible impression of a parenf s love remaina 
impressed upon the heart. Even when steeped in 
guilt or seared in crime, one spot— one little spot 
— will stiU be foun^ consecrated to the purest—* 
the holiest of earthly affections. 

It was with these mingled emotions Mrs S% 
Clair found herself at the door of that mansion 
she had quitted thirty-three years before. It was 
the house in which she had first seen the light- 
where her parents had dwelt — ^and where die 
had left them surrounded by a numerous fal^ily 
— ^but all were gone save the brother sh^ had jusi 
seen, and two sisters, now its sole tenants. Even 
the most artificial characters still retain some na- 
tural feelings, and as Mrs St Clair crossed the 
threshold of her once happy home, and the 
thoughts of the past rushed over her, she ex- 
claimed with a burst of anguish, — 

'' Would to God I had never left it !^' and, 
throwing herself upon a seat, she wept without 

CHAfT£B XII. 1^ 

There is something in real emotion, that al- 
ways carries conviction along with it. Although 
well accustomed to the ebullitions of her mothar^s 
character. Miss St Clair saw and felt the depth 
oi her present feelings^ and sought by her tender 
and affectionate sympathy to soften her sense of 
sorrow. But, with a look and gesture, expressive 
only of abhorrence, her mother rq>elled her from 
her. At that moment a lady approached, and, 
throwing herself into her anns,^ Mrs St Clair 
sobbed in bitterness of spirit, while her sister 
mingled her tears with hers. Miss Black was the 
first to r^ain her composure, and she said in a 
voice, which, though still tremulous with emotion, 
was yet soft and sweet, — 

^^ I love those feelings, my dear Sarah, they 
are so natural. You miss all those you left ben 
hind, and you are thinking what a happier meet* 
ing this might have been, had it pleased God to 
have spared them to us — ^but I trust th^e is a 
happy meeting yet in store for us." 

^' Oh, no, no r sobbed Mrs St Chiir almost 
convulsively, as she leant her head on her sister'^s 

^^ My dear Sarah,*^ said Miss Black in a tone 


•f tender reproach, accompanied by an affection- 
ate embrace ; ^^ but come, let me take you to our 
poor Mary, who cannot go to you.'*' 

Mrs St Clair raised her head, and made an ef- 
fort to subdue her emotion ^s she suffered her- 
self to be led to the apartment where her young* 
est and favourite sister was. When she had left 
home, she had left her a lovely romping child of 
five years old, with laughing blue eyes and curl-' 
kig flaxen hair ; and this image of infant beauty 
she had ever treasured in her memory, though 
reason had told her the reality had long since 
fled. But, alas I reason can but imperfectly pic- 
ture to us the slow and silent ravages of time-^- 
and at sight of her sister Mrs St Clair felt as 
much shocked as though the change had been the 
metamorphose of an instant instead of the gradual 
progress of years of suffering and decay. Ima*- 
^ation, indeed, could not have pictured to itself 
ought so affecting as the contrast thus present- 
ed by a glance of the mind. Mrs St Clair 
thought only of the gay, rosy, ft^olicksome crea- 
ture, whose fairy form seemed even yet to bound 
before her eyes, or hang round her neck in infan- 
tine fondness — and on that self same spot where 


last she had parted firom her, she now beheld her 
a moniunent of premature decay — ^pale, motion* 
less, and paralytic. For a moment she shrunk 
from the half living, half beatified, looking be- 
ing, with that instinctive horror with which the 
worldly mind recoils from all that reminds it of 
perishable nature. A faint streak of red tinged 
her sister^s sallow cheek, and a tear glistened in 
her soft blue eye, and her heart seemed to swell 
-T-perhaps with some Almost forgotten feelings of 
humiliation at her own infirmities. But when 
Mrs St Clair again looked, the slight hectic had 
fled, the tear was dried, and the sigh was check* 

" God's will be done, my sister T said she, 
with a look and accent of meek and holy resigna- 
tion. Mrs St Clair could not speak, but she threw 
herself on her sister's neck and wept 

Gertrude, meanwhile, had stood aloof — ^fae^ 
heart oppressed with sorrow, and her eyes filled 
with tears, as she contrasted her mother's feelings 
towards her sisters, with those she had testified 
towards her; and the painful conviction that 
she was not beloved, forced itself upon her 
in all the bitterness such a discovery was cal- 


culatcd {o excite. At length the agitation of the 
meeting between the sisters began to subside, 
and Miss Black, approaching her niece, tenderly 
embraced her, and led her to her sister. " Here 
is a stranger who has been too jlong overlooked,^ 
said she ; '[ but once seen she will not be soon 
forgotten;" and she gently untied her bonnet, 
and looked on her with eyes of delighted affec- 
tion. Her aunt Mary sweetly welcomed her, 
and also regarded her with an expression of love 
and tenderness, such as Gertrude felt she never 
had read even in her mother'^s eye. There was, 
indeed, little resemblance between Mrs St Clair 
and her sisters, either in mind or appearance. 
Elizabeth, the eldest, belonged to that class who 
can neither be called handsome nor ugly, but are 
yet sometimes thought both. She had regular 
features, and a mild sensible countenance ; but 
she was pale and thin, and, to casual observers, 
had altogether an air of mediocrity, which, in fact, 
was rather indicative of the consistency and uni- 
formity of her character. She was a Christian in 
all things, and its simple, imostentatious spirit 
pervaded all her looks, words, and actions, and 
gave to them a charm, which, in her station, ^no 


worldly acquirements could have imparted. Her 
sister was many years younger, and in spite of sick- 
ness and suffering, stiU retained traces of great 
beauty. Every feature was perfect — ^but the dim 
eye, the pale cheek, and the colourless lip, could 
now only claim pity, where once they had chal- 
lenged admiration. Yet neither pain nor sickness 
had been able to chase the seraphic expression 
which beamed on her countenance like sunshine 
amid ruins. It was the look of one already puri^ 
fled from all earthly passions, but who still look- 
ed with tenderness on the frailties of her fellow 


Mrs St Clair seemed little gratified by the 
fondness her sisters testified for her daughter. 
She remained silent and abstracted, with her eyes 
fixed on the memorials of former days ; for every 
thing remained in the same primitive order as 
when she had left them; and every thing told 
some long forgotten tale, or roused some sad 
though slumbering recollection. She fixed her 
eyes on some foreign shells which decorated the 
old-fashioned chimney-piece, — and what a train ot 
associations did these mute and insignificant ob- 
jects conjure up ! They were the gift of one 


who had loved her in early youth, and who had 
brought them to her — (all thiat he had to bring) 
from afar— and dearly had she prized them, for 
then she had loved the giver. But he was a poor 

and friendless orphan boy ^^nd she became 

the wife of an EarPs son« 

All may choose their own path in life, but who 
can tell to where that path may lead? " The lot," 
indeed, ^^ is cast into the lap, but the whole 
disposing thereof is of the Lord." Mrs St 
Clair had chosen that of ambition, and for thirty 
yews she had dragged out life in exile^ poverty^ 
and obscurity — ^while the one she had forsaken^ 
that of faithfrd and disinterested affection, would 
have led her to the summit of fame, wealth, and 
honour. The poor despised sailor boy had dis^ 
tinguished himself for his skill and bravery, and 
in the honourable career of his profession, had 
won for himself a noble fortime, and a name that 
would descend to posterity. This Mrs St Clair 
knew, for she had heard of his heroic exploitS5 
with feelings of the bitterest regret and self-re- 
proach ; and it was those feelings which spread 
their gloom over her countenance, as she looked 


on the tokens of his youthfiil love, and thought 
of the valiant, high-minded being she had barter- 
ed for a shadow of greatness. She withdrew her 
eyes, and they fell upon a venerable family Bible, 
from whence she had been accustomed to hear 
her mother read a chapter morning and evening 
to her family. She recalled, as though it had 
been yesterday, the last evening she had passed 
in her father^s house. The figure of her mother 
was before her — ^her voice sounded in her ears— 
the words recurred to her then as they had often 
done since* It was the last chapter of Ecclesi* 
astes, unrivalled for its beauty and sublimity, by 
aught that prophet ever spoke, or poet wrote, be- 
ginning with that touching exhortation — ^^ Re- 
member now thy Creator in the days of thy 
youth, while the evil days come not, nor the 
years draw nigh, when thou shalt say I have no 
pleasure in them ;^ — and ending with that awM 
assurance, ^^ For God shall bring every work 
into judgment, with every secret thing, whether 
it be good or whether it be evil.'' Mrs St Clair 
uttered an involuntary groan, and closed her 

" You see much to remind you of the days 

VOL. I. I 


that are gone, my dear sister,^ said Miss Black 
tenderly ; ** but when the first impression is oyer, 
you wiU love to look upon those relics, as we do 
for the sake of those who loved us.*^ 

" Never ! ah, never !'' exclaimed Mrs St Clair, 
starting up, and going to the window ; " every 
thing here is torture to me-^the very air suffo- 
cates me.'' 

She threw open the window and leant out, 
but it was only to behold other mementos of 
days past and gone. She looked upon the little 
garden, the scene of many a childish gambol — ^it 
lay in the fiill blaze of a meridian sun, and all 
was fair and calm. An old laburnum tree still 
hung its golden blossoms over a rustic seat at 
one comer of the garden, and the time since she 
had sat there and decked herself in its fantastic 
garlands seemed as nothing. She rememboed, 
too, when, after a long childish illness, her father 
had carried her in his arms to the garden, with 
what ecstacy she had breathed the fresh air, and 
looked on the blue sky, and plucked the gaudiest 
flowers. ^^ It was on such a day as this,'' thought 
she ; ^^ the air is as fresh now as it was then— the 
sky is as fair— ^the flowers as sweet ;-*but my 


father— ah f were he still alive, would he thank 
Heaven now as he did then, for having preserved 
his child r 

And again the bitter drops fell from her eyes 
as she turned sickening from the view. The chord 
of feeling had been stretched too high to regain 
its ordinary pitch without an effort ; — ^it is some- 
times easier to break the chain than to loosen it. 
Mrs St Clair felt her mind untuned for ordinary 
communing, and she therefore took an abrupt 
leave of her sisters, with a promise of returning 
soon when her nerves should be stronger. Hur- 
rying through the crowd, collected around the 
splendid equipage, she threw herself into it as if 
afraid <)f being recognized, and called impatiently 
to her daughter to follow. The postillions crack- 
ed their whips^^the crowd feU back, and the 
proUd pageant rattled and glittered along till lost 
to the gaze of the envying and admiring throng. 



Nothing is lost on him who sees, 
With an eye that feeling gave, 

For him there*s a story in every hreeze, 
And a picture in every wave. 

Mbs St Clair and her daughter proceeded for 
some time in profound silence. The former seem- 
ed plunged in painful meditation, the latter felt 
grieved and mortified at her mother^s caprice and 
unkindness to her. The first thing which roused 
Mrs St Clair was the view of Rossville Castle, 
rising proudly above the woods which embosomed 
it— and, as she looked, gradually her brow clear- 
ed, her eye brightened, and her countenance re- 
gained its usual expression. 

** Gertrude, my love," said she, taking her 
daughter's hand, ^^ I have ahuost forgot you to- 
day. But your own heart will enable you to con- 


ceive what mine must have suffisred;^ and she 
sighed deeply. 

^^ Yes,^ answered Miss St Clair, in someagita* 
tion, ^^ I cai| conceive that you have felt much — 
but I cannot conceive why — ohi mama-^what 
had I done that you should have shook me from 
you like a venomous reptile ?" 

^^ My dear Gertrude ! what an idea ! diat is the 
mere coinage of your brain— How can you allow 
yourself to be so carried away by your imagma- 
tion ? Come, my dear, let us have no more such 
foolish fancies. Strange, indeed, it would be^-— 
continued she, as the park gate was thrown open 
to receive themr— ^^ in any one to cast off like a 
reptile the fair heiress of this princely domain.^ 

But however strange, her daughter felt it was 
so, and she remained silent. Mrs St Clair re 

" Apropos, Gertrude, when you are lady of 
Rossville, you must build me a little tiny cottage 
on yon lovely green bank, where I may live quiet- 
ly as a humble cottager, while you play the great 
lady : — Come, promise me, Gertrude, that I shall 
have a croft from you — a butt and a ben — a cow^s 
grass and a kail-yard."? 


There was sometliiiig so forced and unnatural 
in her mother's sudden gaiety, that Miss St Clair, 
accustomed as she was to all the inequalities of 
her temper. Mi ahnost frightened at it, and she 
was at a loss how to reply. 

** So you wotf t promise me, Gertrude, even a 
humble independence for my old age P-^Perhaps 
you are right to be cautious-«*Lear's daughters 
spoke him fair, and after all turned him out of 
doors, and why should I expect more from you P^ 

^' Oh mama !^ exclaimed Miss St Clair, burst-' 
ing into tears, ^^ do not kill me with such cruel 

^* Is it so cruel, then, in a mother to crave a 
pittance from the bounty of her child ?^ 

^^ It is cruel to doubt that I would give you all 
— yes, were all this mine to-morrow, I could not 
be more mistress of it than you should be.^ 

^' So you think at present, Gertrude, but you 
know not as I do the mutability of the human 
mind. You,will form other ties— other connections 
— you will marry, and your mother will be forgot- 
ten — ^perhaps forsaken — ^you will marry," cried 
she with increased violence, " you will marry, and 
I shall be left to starve — you will fidl a prey to 


the nrlifices of a Colonel DelmoiuM-a needy, des- 
perate i^ndthrift. I see already he is paying 
court to the future heiress, and, once the. wife of 
that designmg extravagant man, you wiU have ih)- 
tlmg to besitow." 

Shocked and amazed at her mother^s violence. 
Miss St Clair sought to tranquillize her by assur- 
ances, that she was mistaken in supposing Colo- 
nel Dehnour had any such views, when Mrs St 
Clair interrupted her— ^^ Promise me, then, that 

' you will never become his wife.'' ' 

There is always somethiiig revolti^ to an 
open ingenuous mind in being fettered by pro- 
mises ; but there was something more than even 
that natural repugnance, to make Gertrude shrink 
fitm thus binding herself to her mother's wiH, 
and she remained silent ; but the deep blush that 
burned on her cheek spoke more eloquently than 
words. Mrs St Clair regarded her with a pierc- 

. ing look — ^then exclaimed, in a tranc^rt of anger, 
^^ And is it even so*— *and all that I have done, 
and suffered^ i s ■ ' ^ then, sudd^y sto^ksg, 
she added, in a milder tcme,—^^^ Gertrude, my 
wish is to save you from the dangers with which 
you are already surrounded— promise me, at 


least, tliat you will not many until you have at- 
tained the age of twenty.^>ne— that you will never 
marry without my consent, and until you have 
provided for my old age.*" 

^^ Mama,"" said Miss St Clair, with a calmness 
and self-possession which bespoke her detennina- 
tion, ^^ I here promise that I will not marry, with- 
out your consent, before the age of twenty-one, 
and until I have provided for you as becomes my 
mother — ^more I cannot — I dare not**-! tvill not 

^^ Then with that I must be satisfied,^ said 
Mrs St Clair, as the carriage stopped at the Cas- 
tle door ; and having alighted, she entered the 
house, while her daughter stood some minutes on 
the lawn, inhaling the mild freshness of a west 
wind, laden with the balmy sweets of opening buds 
and blossoms. Insensibly she stroUed on; and 
gradually the impression of the unpleasant scene 
she had just had with her mother, wore away be- 
neath the calming influence of nature^s charms 
—the clear rioudless sky— the luUing flow of the 
river — ^the bright green woods in all the luxari- 
ance of early summer. 

Miss St Clair wandered on till she reached 


a little secluded gpot she had not yet seen. On 
the top of a green knoll that rose gradually firom 
the river, stood part of an ancient building of an 
irregular and. picturesque form, but now almost 
covered with ivy. Some wild cherry, or what, in 
the language of the country, axe called geen trees, 
grew almost close to it ; — they were now white 
with blossoms, and formed a fandAil contrast to 
the emblems of age and decay with which they 
were combined. The ground betwixt the river 
and the ruin appeared to have been originally a 
garden, or orchard ; and some old apple trees still 
remained, whose mossy trunks, and shrivelled 
branches, bore evidence of their antiquity, while 
here and there a cluster of rich pink blossoms 
showed that 

" Life was in the lea^ for stilly between 
The fits of falling snow^ appear'd the streaky green." 

Some aged weeping willows dipt their silvery fo- 
liage in the dark waters, as they glided slowly and 
silently along. It was a scene where the contem- 
plative mind might have mused over the moumAil 
record of time, and things, and people, past and 


gone, with their joys and their sonrows^f—whe^ the 
youthful imaginatioii might have pictured to it- 
self some ideal paradise yet to be realized. 

^^ Ah r^ thought Gertrude, ^^ how willingly 
would I renounce all the pomp of greatness, to 
dwell here in lowly a£Fection with one who would 
love me, and whom I coidd love in return I How 
strange that I, who could cherish the very worm 
that crawls beneath my foot, have no one bdng 
to whom I can utter the thoughts of my heart-— 
no one on whom I can bestow its best affections !^ 
She raised her eyes, swimming in tears, to hear 
ven, but it was in the poetical enthusiasm of feel- 
ing, not in the calm spirit of devotion. She was 
suddenly roused by hearing some one approach, 
and presently Colonel Delmour, forcing his way 
through some wild tangled bushes, hastened to- 
wards her with an appearance of the greatest de- 
light. At sight of him, the thoughts of her mo- 
ther's warning rushed to her recollection, the dis- 
like she had expressed — the sus]^dlons ^he har- 
boured — ^the promise she would have exacted*— 4JI 
seemed to give him a sort of inei^licable interest 
in her eyes. She coloured deeply, and die con- 


sdoosness she had done so added to her confu- 

^^ I have to apologize to you,^ said Colonel 
Dehnour, ^' for thus literally forcing my way to 
you. Lyndsay and I were practising archery 
when I descried you ; to see you, and not to fly 
to you, was impossible, had Briareus himself op- 
posed my passage ; so, leaving Edward master of 
the field, I winged my way to you like one of my 
own arrows-— but I fear I startled you?"^ 

Miss St Clair felt as though she were acting in 
direct disobedience to her mother, in thus meet- 
ing, even accidentally, with the man she had just 
heard denounced by her. In great embarrassment 
she begged he would resume his exercise, and she 
was moving away, when Colonel Delmour caught 
her hand, and in a lone tone said, 

^^ Do not sdr from hence, unless you wish to 
encounter Miss Pratf s observations ; she is beat- 
ing about here ; I saw her as I came along, but I 
trust she will lose scent ; do remain till that dan- 
ger vi past.'' 

Almost equally averse to encoimter Miss Pratt 
at any time, but more particularly at present, she 
suffered Colonel Delmour to seat her on a little 


mossy knoll, and throwing himself on the grass at 
her feet — 

<^ Be this your throne, and behold your sub- 
ject,^ said he in a half serious half sportive tone ; 
then raising his eyes to hen^, he repeated, 

'^ Le premier jour qu'on aime on se plait en secret 
A mettre au rang des rois I'objet que Ton adore ; 
£t s'il ^toit un rang plus edatant encore 
Ce seroit la celui que le cceur choiseroit." 

Miss St Clair tried to reply in a strain of badin^ 
age, but the words died on her lips, and colour- 
ing stUl more deeply, she remained silent. At 
that moment Mr Lyndsay appeared, but ere he 
had time to address her, the shriU voice of Miss 
Pratt was heard, and presently she broke in. 

" Ah, ha ! so you're all here ! — Upon my word, 
here's a meeting of iriends. It puts me in mind of 
a scene in a play, where all the lovers meet to run 
away with pretty Mistress Anne Page, and the 
one cries mum, and the other cries budget.'' ' 

" Two excellent words," said Colonel Delmour, 
looking much provoked ; " of course you imder- 
stand their meanings—be silent and begone." 

" Two very impertinent words, in my opinion," 
said Miss Pratt; seating herself beside Gertrude ; 


<^ and, to tell you the truth, IVe no great notion 
of your mums. — There^s a family in this county 
all so tongue-tied, that Anthony Whyte calls 
their house the Mummery— -and by the bye, Mr 
Edward, I really think you may cry mum any 
day, yotfre grown very silent of late.'' 

^^ A proof I am growing wiser, I suppose,'^ an- 
swered he, laughingly, ^^ according to some great 
authority, who, I think, says most men speak 
from not knowing how to be silent.'' 

>^ The saying of some dull blockhead, I sus- 
pect,^ said Colonel Delmour,' still evidently out 
of humour. 

^^ Indeed, I think so too. Colonel," cried Miss 
Pratt ; ^^ any body can hold their tongue, but it's 
not every body that can speak." 

" Not every body that ought to speak, or, at 
least, ought to be listened to," said Colonel Del- 
mour, contemptuously turning from her, and ad- 
dressing some words in French in a low tone to 
Grertrude, while Miss Pratt gabbled on- — 

** Bless me ! what a tear I've got in my gown ! 
there's really an ill luck attends this gown — I 
never have it on without its meeting with some 
accident— that's all I've got by hunting after you 


youngsters C and in the twinkling of an eye, her 
huswife was out— her thimble on her finger, and 
her needle flying through all the intricacies of a 
very bad cross tear. 

" What's this we were talking about ? O ! about 
people holding their tongues-— I really wish these 
birds would hold theirs, for I'm perfectly dieved 
with their chattering sh, sh,'' shaking her para- 
sol at a goldfinch. " I really think young people 
should be made to hold their tongues, and only 
speak when they're spoken to— Was that a fish 
that leapt in the water just now ? — ^what a pity 
but one of you had had a fishing-rod in your 
hands instead of these senseless bows and arrows 
—it would have been some diversion to have 
seen you hook a nice three pound weight caUg * Jo- ^ ■ 
trout :— and really old people should be cautious 
of speaking— they're sometimes rather slow, you 
know-^not but what I can listen to any body. — 
Bless me ! how the wind's blowing these blossoms 
about— I'm like to be blinded with them." 

*\Come, you shall listen to me then," said Mr 
Lyndsay, as he caught some of the falling blos- 
soms, " while I apostrophize them in some pretty 
lines of Herrick's. 




Fair pledges of a fruitful tree^ 
Why do you fall so fast ? 
Your date is not so past ; 
But you may stay here yet a while^ 
To blush and gently smile ; 
And go at last. 

What were ye bom to be. 
An hour or half's delight. 
And so to bid good night ? 
'Twas pity nature brought ye forth. 
Merely to show your worth. 
And lose you quite. 

But you are lovely leavesi where we 
May read how soon things have 
Their end, though ne'er so brave ; 
And after they have shown their pride 
Like you a while, they glide 
Into the grave. 

Miss Pratt testified great impatience while the 
verses were repeating ; but the purpose was an- 
swered — ^the time was passed while the fracture 
was repairing — and afraid of more poetry, for 
which she had a mortal antipathy, she readily 
assented to Miss St Claires proposal of returning 

" I can tell you one thing, my dear," whisper- 


ed she to Gertrude, ^^ that mum should be the 
watch-word hereto-day; — a certam person^^with a 
wmk at Colonel Delmour, ^^ is but a younger 
brother, and not the thing. He can be very pleas- 
ant when he pleases ; but take my word for it he^s 
not to ride the ford upon :— but, bless me, I had 
no notion it was so late, and IVe a bit of lace to 
run upon my gown before dinner !^ — and away 
ran Miss Pratt to her toilette, while Gertrude re- 
tired to her chamber, to ruminate on the events 
of the day. 

cnAPTBs XIV. 145 


Keep, therefore, a true woman's eye. 
And love me still, but know not why ; 
So hast thou the same reason still 

To doat upon me ever. 

Old Madrigal 

That ** she who deliberates is lost,'^ is a re- 
mark that has been so often verified, that al- 
though there are innumerable instances of women 
deliberating to be saved, yet when a lover su^ 
pects the object of his wishes to be debating the 
question of— to love or not to love — ^he feels pret- 
ty secure that it will be decided iii his favour. 
At least so &lt Colonel Delmour, as he marked 
the. thoughtM cast of Miss St Claires counte- 
nance when she entered the drawing-room before 
diimet. She had, indeed, that day deliberated 
more than she had ever done in the whde course 
of her life before, though her deliberations had not 
yet assumed any distinct form. By nature tender 

VOL. I. K 



Mkd affectionate in her disposition, she was like- 
wise high-spirited and impatient of unjust con- 
trol ; and the situation in which she was now 
placed was calculated to call forth all the latent 
energies of her character. " II y a quelquefois 
dans le cours de la vie, de si chers plaisirs et de 
si tendres engagements que Ton nous defend, 
qu'^il estnaturel de desirer du moins quails fiissent 

Miss St Clair certainly could not help wishing 
that she had not been forbidden to love her cou- 
sin ; for, although he had not absolutely declared 
himself her lover, he had said more than enougb 
to convince her that he was deeply in love, and 
that the happiness of his life hung upon her de- 
cision. When she thought of her mother^s pre- 
judice against him, so unjust, so unaccountable, it 
seemed next to impossible for her to remain in a 
state of indecision. She must either adopt her 
mother^s sentiments, and hate, fly, abjure him ; 
or she must yield to her own inclinatioBs, and lis- 
ten to him— -look on him, and love him. In this 
state of mental embarrassment j it was impossible 
for any one so ingenuous to conceal what was 
passing in her mind. But those who were most 


Interested in observing her construe^ her beha- 
viour^ each according to their own wishes. In 
her constrained manner and averted eyes, when- 
ever Colonel Dehnour addressed her, Mrs St 
Clair flattered herself she saw symptoms of that 
distrust and dislike she had endeavoured to incid- 
€«te ; while he for the present felt satisfied in the 
consciousness that he was, at leasts not an object 
of indifference. 

But it was imposjsible for any ruminations to 
be carried on long in the presence of Miss Pratt, 
whose own ruminations never lasted longer than 
till she had made herself mistress of the dresses of 
the company, or the dishes on the table. Having 
finished her scrutiny of the former, she addressed 
Mrs St Clair: 

*^ You were very soon home to-day I think ; 
you must really have paid fashionable visits to 
your£riends — to be sure, your sister'^s is not a house 
to stay long in — Poor Miss Mary, what a pretty 
oreature she was once, and as merry as a grig*— 
but she has taken rather a religious turn now — 
to be sure, when people have not the use of their 
legs, what can they do ? — I^m sure we should be 
thankfiol th^t have all our faculties.*" 



" Except the faculty of being retigious,^'' said 
Mr Lyndsay with a smile. 

" A certain degree of religion I think extremely 
proper,*" said Miss Pratt in a by-way-of serious 
manner ;— ** but I'm just afraid itV rather over- 
done—not that I mean to say any thing against 
the Miss Blacks, for I assure you I have a very 
high respect for them ; — ^and old Mr Ramsay ! 
how did you find him ? — ^in a tolerable tune I 
hope ?'' 

^^ I was afraid of trespassing too far on Lord 
Rossville's goodness, by detaining his carriage and 
servants, and therefore delayed visiting my uncle 
till another opportunity .■*' 

" That was being extremely considerate, in- 
deed,^ began his Lordship, but, as usual, was cut 
short by Miss Pratt. 

^^ Bless me ! what's the use of carriages and 
servants but to wait ? If you had played your cards 
well, you would have gone first to your uncle— ^an 
old man in a nignt-cap, worth good seventy thou- 
sand pound, and as cross as two sticks, is not to 
be sneezed at, as Anthony Whyte says; but 
there's the gong — O Lord RossviUe, I wish you 
would really get a bell, for I declare there's no 


bearing one's self speak for that gong-^r what 
would you think of a trumpet ? Bells and gcmgs 
are grown so common^ that Anthony Whyte's go- 
ing to get a trumpet.^ 

^^ Being already provided with a trumpeter, it 
is quite proper that Mr Whyte should have a 
trumpet,^ said Colonel Delmour. 

^^ Considering with what deadly intentions we 
assemble at the dinner-table/^ said Mr Ljmdsay, 
^^ I really think a warlike instrument a much 
more appropriate symbol than a peaceftd, fasting, 
matin-sounding bell — indeed^ the organ of de- 
strudiveness is always so strong with me at this 
hour, and I feel so much of the fee, fa, fiun, about 
me, that I can scarcely ask you to trust yourself 
with me,^ and he good humouredly gave his arm 
to Miss Pratt, as she was pattering away to the 
dining-room, with rather a discomfited look, by 
herself; " and now for the pride, pomp, and cir- 
cumstance of glorious war,^'-^as the party seated 
themselves at the splendid board. But Miss 
Pratt's mortification never could be made by any 
possible means to endure much longer than the 
shock of a shower-bath — and by the time the 
dishes were uncovered, Richard was himself again. 


** Colonel Delmour, whaf s tBat before you ?-i- 
I think it looks like fricasseed chicken— Fll thank 
you for some of it ;^ and Colonel Dehnour, with 
the most indifferent air as to Miss Fratt^s wants, 
and talking all the while to Miss St Clair, sent 
her a part which did not suit her taste. 

'* Just take that back,^ said she to the servant ; 
** with my compliments to Colonel Delmour, and 
rU be obliged to him for a wing — Colonel, don'^t 
you know it^s the fashion now, when you help 
game or poultry, to ask — Pray do you run or fly ? 
meaning do you choose leg or wing. There was a 
good scene at Anthony Whyte's, one day fat 
Lady Puffendoijf was there — ^you know she^s so 
asthmatic she can hardly walk, so when she chose 
chicken, pray, Ma^am, says Anthony, do you run 
or fly ? Of course a fine titter ran round the com- 
pany. Lord RossYille, did you hear that ? Co- 
lonel Delmour, remember I fly.*" 

<^ I shall have great pleasure in assisting your 
flight,'' said he with an ironical smile; "pray, 
when may we expect to see Miss Pratt take 

" Is that, that you may have a shot at me with 
your bow and arrow? I thought, indeed, you 


lt)oked as if you were rather bent upon wounding 
liearts than harts to-day — ^you understand the 
^difference, dotf t you, Miss St Clair ?"* who only 
coloured a reply, and even Colonel Delmour 
seemed disconcerted. ^^ Well, never mind, mum's 
the word, you know,'' with a provoking wink ; 
^* only, I advise all young ladies who value their 
hearts to cry budget to gentlemen with bows and 
arrows.^ Lord Rossville's ideas, fortunatdy, 
never could keep pace with Miss Pratt's tongue 
—he had now only overtaken her at the ^* run 
and fly,'^ and was busy preparing, with all the 
powers of his mind, a caveat against the use of 
cant terms — to begin with a quotation from Lord 
Chesterfield, and to be followed up by a full de- 
claration of his own sentiments on the subject. In 
short, his mode of proceeding was something like 
bringing out a field-piece to knock down a fly, 
which, in the meantime, had perched itself on the 
very mouth of the cannon, unconscious of the for- 
midable artillery that was preparing against her, 
then buzzed away. 

^^ Let me help you to some asparagus, my 
Lord ?" helping herself largely in the meantime ; 
>^ very fine it is, though rather out of season nonic— 


it has been long over «t Wbyte Hall. But vho 
can help asparagus with asparagusrtQngs ? An- 
thony Whyte says, if ever he's prevailed upon to 
go into Parliament, it will be for the sole purpose 
of bringing in three bills for the relief of the rich. 
One of them is to be an act for the suppression of 
asparagus-tongs; another is to make it felony 
for a cook to twist the legs of game, or &rce a 
turkey to carry its head imder its wing ; and a 

third is "" 

But here Lord RossviUe's indignation got the 
better of his good-breeding, and even overcame 
the more tardy operations of his mind ; and be- 
fore Anthony Why te's third bill could be brought 
forward, he exclaimed, ** Mr Anthony Whyte 
bring bills into Parliament ! — Pray, Miss Pratt, 
have you any authority for supposing or insinu- 
ating, that Mr Whyte has the most distant sha- 
dow of an idea of attempting to procure a seat in 
Parliament ? — If he has, I can only say I have 
been most grossly misinformed — ^if he has not, 
it is highly improper in you, or in any of his re- 
ioy^ions or friends, who the world will naturally 
conclude are in his confidence, to start such a 
supposition ; — ^it is a serious, a very serious mat- 
ter to tamper with a gentleman's name in politics. 


more particularly in the troublesome and factious 
times in which we live.'' Even Miss Pratt was 
for an instant discomfited by the solemn indig- 
nation of this address ; but she quickly rallied, 
and whispering to Mr Lyndsay, " He's very bi- 
hous to-day, his eyes are like boiled gooseberries, 
honest man !" She resumed, " Bless me. Lord 
Rossville, one would think I had spoken high 
treason, but I was only joking ; Mr Whyte, I can 
assure you, has too much good sense to think of 
going into Parliament ; if he had had a mind 
that way he might have been in long ago ; Fm 
told, from pretty good authority, he might cany 
the county any day he liked." 

Here the Earl absolutely gasped in the at- 
tempt to bring up words long and strong enough 
to immolate the presumption of Miss Pratt and 
Anthony Whyte. " I can assure you, both 
Lord Punmedown and Sir Thomas Turnabout 
spoke seriously to Mr Whyte about it some time 
ago — ' Anthony,' says my Lord, ^ if you wish to 
mt, you've only to stand.' Nothing could be strong- 
er than that, you know. * Faith, my Lord,' says 
he, * I believe I would have to lie in the Gisi 
place.' Very good, wasn't it ? Anthony's always 



rmdy with his answer; I assure you, if he was in 
Parliament he would keep his own.^ 

^ Is there any body talked of in opposition to 
Robert ?^ asked Colonel Delmour, as if he had 
not ey^i deigned to hear Miss Pratt — ^^ apropos 
— I had a letter from him this morning.'** 

^< Indeed T exclaimed the Earl widi great ear- 
nestness. '^ I am rather surprised that sach a 
joece of information should have been only cam- 
municated to me in this accidental manner — I 
have been an^ously looking for letters from Mr 
Delmour for some days — ^what does he say with 
regard to the sitting of Parliament, and does he 
point at any probaUe time for coming north ?^ 

'^ I merely glanced at his letter,^ answered 
Colonel Delmour, with an air of indifference ; ** it 
seemed fiUed as usual with politics, and I am no 

" I am not so sure about that,** said Miss Pratt 
m an under tone, and with a most provoking sig- 
nificant look. « But you shall hear what he 
says — Smith," turning to his servant, " you will 
^nd some letters upon the writing-table in my 
dres8ing,room, bring them here." 

" ^ hope you donH leave your love-letters lying 


about that way. Colonel ?^ cried the incorrigible 
Pratt. *^ I assure you, if I was a young lady, I 
would take care how I corresponded with you— • 
you're not like Anthony Whyte, who keeps all 
his letters like grim death."" 

The letters were brought, and Colonel Dehnour, 
taking his brother's from amongst them, glanced 
his eye over it, and read in a skimming manner— 
'^ Animated and protracted debate — admirable 
speech — ^legs two hours and a quarter — immense 
applause — 197 of majority — glorious result — 
opposition fairly discomfited,'' &c. &c. ; he then 
read aloud— 

" Pray, inform the Earl there is no longer a 
doubt as to the dissolution of Parliament next 
session, we must therefore prepare to take the 
field immediately. . Lord P. and Sir J. T. intend 
to oppose us I imderstand, and to bring forward 
some tool of their own, but I have little fear as 
to the result. I now only wait the passing of the 
road bill, and the discussion on the resumption 
of cash payments, to be off for Scotland ; my un- 
cle may, therefore, expect me in the course of a 
few days, when I trust we shall be able to make a 
tolerable muster. P. S.— I see a Major Waddell 


has lodged claim for enrolment, do you know any 
thing of him ?^ 

^^ Major Waddell !^ repeated the Earl^ patting 
his hand to his forehead in a musing attitude, as 
if endeavouring to recollect him. 

« Major Waddell,'' said Mrs St Clahr, in her 
softest manner, '^ is a gentleman of large fortune^ 
lately returned from India— heir, I understand^ 
to Sir. William Waddell, and upon the point 
of marriage with a niece of mine — ^his vote, I 
am sur e " ^ Luckily, before Mrs St Clair 
could commit herself and Major Waddell's vote. 
Miss Pratt dashed in — " Aye ! Miss Bell Black 
going to be married to Major Waddell ! Ton 
my word, she has fallen upon her feet-— that will 
b6 a disappointment to many a one ; for I assure 
you the Major's a prize; and I know three 
ladies he was supposed to be looking after — ^he 
even went so far as to present one of them with a 
very handsome Paradise plume — that I know to 
be a fact, for I was staying in the house at the 
time, and there was a great debate whether she 
should have accepted it before he had made his 
proposals. — ^Aye ! I was told that Miss Bell had 
said lately in a company, that she never would 


xnarry any man who cbuldnH give her silver tu- 
reens and comrars— He's very well connected too 
— Let me see, his mother was a Bog, and his 
jfother a Waddell of the Waddell Mains family 
-—so he has good blood both ways." 

All this was very agreeable to Mrs St Clair— 
it was giving consequence to her family, which 
was an advantage to herself. Miss Fratt^s prib- 
ble prabble was, therefore, music to her ear, and 
while she gave her whole attention to that. Colo- 
nel Delmour contrived to render his conversotion, 
no less interesting to her daughter, whose delibe^ 
rations, like Othello^s doubts, were gradually as- 
i^uming a more decided form. For in love, as in 
jealousy, it will commonly be found, that " to be 
once in doubt is once to be resolved.^ 

As the ladies rose firom table. Lord Rossvill^ 
who had evidently been struggling for some time 
to give utterance to some exquisite idea, called 
Miss Pratt, just as she had reached the door : — 
they all stopped. 

^^ Miss Pratt,^^ said his Lordship, making an 
effort to subdueanyappearance of risibility, " Miss 
Pratt, I think your friend who received the pre- 
sent of a plume from Major Waddell will have 


no great caxise to plume herself upon that-— as^ 
from your account, it can no longer be a feather 
in her cap.'' 

The Earl was too much elated with this saDy 
to think of Lord Chesterfield, and he indulged 
himself in a laugh tolerably loud and intolerably 

*^ Ha f ha ! ha ! very good, indeed !'' cried 
Miss Pratt. '^ I must let Anthony Whyte and 
Lord Punmedown hear that — ^very well, indeed ! 
-—Poor Miss Kitty Fansyflame, as you say, it 
will be no great feather in her cap now, poor 
soul ! ha ! ha ! ha ! Lady Betty, did you hear 
that?'' then pinching Gertrude's arm, she whis- 
pered, *^ As Anthony Whyte says, it's a serious 
matter when Lord RossviUe makes a joke— hon- 
est man — ^ha ! ha ! ha ! — ^very fair, indeed." And 
Miss Pratt kept up a running laugh all the way 
to the drawing-room. 



The pilot best of winds does talk, 
The peasant of his cattle, 
The shepherd of his fleecy flock, 
The soldier of his battle. 


The expected dissolution of Parliament was 
all in favour of the growing attachment of the 
cousins. Gertrude, indeed, tried, or thought she 
tried, to avoid receiving the attentions of Colonel 
Delmour; but in the thousand minute, and aL 
most imperceptible opportunities which ^e for 
ever occurring where people dwell under the same 
roof, he found many occasions of insinuating the 
ardour and sincerity of his passion, yet in a man^ 
n^ so refined and unobtrusive, that it would have 
seemed downright prudery to have disclaimed his 

Lord Rossville was— or, what was the same 
thiDg, fancied he was, so overwhelmed with busi- 


ness, that, contrary to his usual practice, he now 
always retired immediately after tea to his study, 
there to con over the map and count over the 
roll of the county, and to frame the model of a 
circular letter, which was to surpass all the circu- 
lar letters that ever had issued from a circular 

Mrs St Clair was busy too— she had begun to 
canvass with her brother and her uncle, to be- 
speak their votes, and had written to oflfer a visit 
to the latter the following day, by the EarPs de- 
sire. Lady Betty sat, as usual, at her little ta- 
ble, with her rug, her novel, and her fat favourite. 
Miss Pratt gabbled and knotted. Mr Lyndsay 
read. Colonel Delmour and Gertrude, alone, 
seemed unoccupied, but " how various their em- 
ploymehts whom the world deems idle.'' — " You 
are in an imcommon quiescent state to-night, 
Delmour,'' said Mr Lyndsay, closing his book 
and rising — " Neither music, nor billiards, nor 
ennui— *most wonderfiil !" 

^^ Etre avec les gens qu'on aime, cela suffit ; 
rever, leur parler, ne leur parler point, aupres d'eux 
tout est egal," replied he, casting a look towards 


CHAPTSR XV. 101 i 

Ckrtrude, but ofibctmg to address Miss Prstt*^ 
<< Is it not so, Miss PraU ^ 

'^ To tell you the truth, Colonel,^ ansirered 
she with some asperity, ^< when people speak 
French to me, I always lay it down as a rule, that 
they^ speaking nonsense— I'*m sure there^s words 
enough in plain English to say all that any body 
has to say.^ 

^< Ah 1 but they are too plain — that is precise- 
ly my objection to them, for you, I am sure, are 
aware,^ and again he stole a glance at Miss St 
Xllair, *^ ^ combien de choses qu'^on n^iqiercoit que 
par sentiment, et dont il est impossible de rendre 
raison f ^ now, the French is the language of sen- 
timent — ^the English of reason— <^on8equently It 
is most unreasonable in you, my dear Miss Pratt, 
to insist upon my expressing my sentiments in a 
plain reasonable manner — but come, since you 
profess to be insensible to sentiment-^try whether 
you cannot prevail upon Miss St Clair to give us 
some music.^ 

"Music!" reiterated Miss Pratt; "fiddle- 
sticks ! for any sake, let us have one night of peace 
and rest — ^for I declare Lord Rossville makes a 
perfect toil of music— but, indeed, if s the same 

VOL. I. L 


-efcij -whtre nam — tbere^s not s boitte 70a go in- 
to but some of die fiDnS^ sie mmicd. I know 
one fimOy -whae thae*s firegrawii up djn^liten 
dut «n {day upon the haip. Slid Boch s toidiig, and 
stnnging, and thnnnming, goes on, that I de- 
dare I get perfectly stupid. Not oiify that, bat, 
as Anthony Whyte says, yon used to be aware cf 
your danger when yoa saw apiano or a fiddle ina 
house ; but now yoa have mosic in all shapes, and 
such contnvances !— 4here*s musical glasses, and 
musical docks, and mnacal snuff-boxes, and now 
they Ve got musical wotk-boxes. — The toother day, 
when I was at Lady Restall^ I happoied to want 
.a thread in a hurry, and was flying to her woik- 
box for it — ^Stop, stop, says she, and III give you 
something better than a thread; so she locks up 
.her box and sets it a^-going, and, to be sure, I 
thought it never would have done — tune after 
tune— and isn^t that a lovely waltz, says she, and 
isn'^t that a sweet quadrille ! — Thinks I,my friend, 
if you was mine, I would soon stop your mouth, 
and make you mind your own business.*^ 

" But I hope you got your thread ?" inquired 
L«dy Betty. 

^* Yes, yes, I got my thread at last, but isn't 


it a hard case that one can^t get a black silk 
diread, if it was to save their life, without- get- 
ting half a dozen tunes into the bargain ? But 
thaf s not the most ridiculous part ; for, says she, 
IVe commissioned a walking-cane for my Lord 
from Paris, (you know Lord Restall canH walk 
the length of his toe without a stick,) and it is to 
play three waltzes, two quadrilles, a hornpipe, 
and the Grand Turk's March — ^it will be such an 
amusement, says she, when he^s walking with his 
friends, to set his stick a-going. — Thinks I, he'll 
be clever if ever he sets it a-going about my ears. 
Miss St Clair, my dear, have you no nice, nacky, 
little handy work, that you could be doing at, 
wMle we sit and chat .?" 

" That is a proper reproof for my idleness,** 
said Gertrude, rising to fetch her work. 

" How I detest the stupid vulgar industry of 
working ladies,'' said Colonel Delmour ; " come, 
let me lead you to the music-room,'' and he took 
her hand. 

" What are you going to play .?" asked Lady 

" Tibbie Fowler," answered Miss Pratt— ^ 
" Miss St Clair^ my dear, did you ever hear Tib- 


bie Fowler?"^ and^ in her ciBcked voice, she 
struck up that celebrated ditty. Colonel T>d* 
i^our, with an expression of disgust, inunediately 
hurried Miss St Clair to the adjoining roomi 
leaving Miss Pratt to carol away to Lady Betty 
and fat Flora. 

Much has been said of the power of music) 
and all who have ears and souls will admit ibftt 
its influence has not been exaggerated even by its 
most enthusiastic votaries. In every heart of 
sensibility nature has implanted a chord which, if 
rightly touched, wiU yield fine issue, whether ta 
the loftier or the gentler passions of the mil^ 
-^whether that chord vibrates responsive to the 
pealing organ — ^the spirit-stirring drum^ or the 
nightingale's soft lay. Some there are, indeed, 
to whom music is merely a science, an assemblage 
of fine concords and discords ; and who, possess- 
ed of all that skill and knowledge can impart, 
are yet strangers to those '^ mystic transports)^ 
whose movements are in the soul, and which con* 
stitute the true charm of melody. But Colonel 
Delmour could not be said to belong to either of 
those classes, or rather, he partook somewhat of 
both; he was passionately fond of music, And 

CHAl*T£E XV. 16S 

istkg with mach taste and expresnon; but, it 

might be doubted whether his was 

<' le ^l^ant qui Be sent dans raine." 

Be that as it may, he had hitherto, in the Tariouii 

flirtations in which he had been engaged, found 

musie a most usefiil auxiliary, and by much the 

safest, as well as the most elegant, medium for 

communicating his passion. It was, therefore, 

an invariable rule with Colonel Delmour to use 

other men^s verse, as well as other men^s prose, 

instead of his own. For similar reasons, he also 

preferred declaring his passion either in French 

or Italian ; and having read all the lighter works 

in these languages, and being gifted with a good 

memory and a ready wit, he was seldom at a loss 

for expressions suited to each particular case. 

The words he selected for the present occasion 

were those beautiAil ones, 

" Felice chi vi mira 

Mn piu feliee chi per voi wmgita" &c. 

when suddejily Miss Pratt burst in with ^^ Wisht, 
wisht — ^there's somebody coming that will make 
us all change our note, I^m thinking ;^ and while 
she spoke, a spattered chaise-and-four, with horses 
in a foam, drove up, which was recognized by its 


bearings to be that of Mr Delmour. All was- 
bustle and sensation, and the family, with the ex- 
ception of Lord Rossville, had dropped in one by 
one to the music-room, where Mr Delmour was 
ushered in. He was what many would have call- 
ed a very fine-looking man — tall and straight, 
with handsome regular features, although some* 
what resembling Lord Rossville both in person 
and manners. He paid his compliments rather 
with the well-bred formality of the old school 
than with the easy disengaged air of a man of 
fashion, and totally devoid of that air of empresse- 
ment towards Miss St Clair which had mark- 
ed the attentions of his brother from their first 
meeting. In fact, Mr Delmour seemed little en- 
grossed with any of the party, but looked round 
as if in search of a far more interesting object, 
and then anxiously inquired where Lord Rossville 
was. But ere an answer could be returned the 
Earl himself entered, and mutual pleasure was 
testified by the uncle and nephew at sight of each 

^^ Although, upon ordinary occasions, I confess 
I am no friend to what are termed unexpected 
pleasures,^ said his Lordship ; " yet, in the pre- 


sent instance, my dear Robert, I own I do not 
feel my pleasure at your arrival at all diminished 
by the unexpectedness of your appearance* At 
the same time, it would not have been amiss, per-* 
haps, to have apprised me of your intention at this 
important time."'* 

" Impossible T replied Mr Delmour eagerly ; 
'^ quite impossible ! In fact, I set off the instant; 
the House rose, which was on Friday morning at 
half past five, after a most interesting debate on 
the Paper Currency, which, I am happy to tell 
you, we carried by a majority of eighty-five.'^ 

" Bravo !'' exclaimed the Earl. — " And out 
Road Bill P'' 

" Is passed — ^hut how stands the county ? — 
Have you felt its pulse at all ?* — I understand a 
brisk canvass has commenced in a certain quarter. 
I got a hint of that from Lord Wishton, which, 
in fact, induced me to set off without a momenf $ 

, ^^ You acted wisely and welly'' said the Earl;: 
^^ delays are always dangerous— >more especiaUy 
upon occasions such as the present.'** 

" It's high time you had begun to canvassy^if 
you expect to succeed in your election, I can tdlt 
you," interposed Miss Pratt, with one of her 


sharp pithy glances at Colonel Dehnour and 
Grertrade, who kept a little apart ; and to judge 
by the Uush and the smile which occasionaUy 
flittfd OTcr her beautiful features, as she some- 
times bent her head to his whispers, the conver- 
sation was of rather a more interesting nature 
than what was carrying on between the uncle and 

Miss Pratt's r^nark did not hit either of them, 
and the latter resumed — ^* I am told the Qjfo^ 
site party give out they can abready reckon upon 
twenty-nine votes— that, I suspect, is a ruse de 
guerre ; but still it shows the necessity of our 
taking the field immediately.^ 

** Precisely my own sentiments !^ ei^claimed 
Lord RofisvUle with delight ; ^^ as you justly ob- 
serve, there is not a moment to lose.*** 

^^ Something might yet be done to-night,^ siud 
Mr Dehnour, looking at his watch. 

^^ Something has been done already,^ replied 
his Lordship, with an air of conscious importance; 
*^but it is now almost supper time, and you must 
be much fatigued with your long and rapid 
jouxn^ ; I must, therefore, vote fer loi adjourn- 


As the servant at that moment announced sup- 
per, this was a very bright sally for the Earl, 
though it did not produce aU the effect he had 

" Mr Delmour, you will conduct Miss St Clair 
to the supper room ;*" and Colonel Delmour, with 
infinite reluctance, was obliged to relinquish her 
hand to his brother. With no less unwillingness 
did she bestow it, and her chagrin was not lessen- 
ed at finding herself placed between the uncle and 
nephew at supper, and condemned to hear, with- 
out being able to Ustea, to their conversation, 
which now, in spite of Miss Pratf s desultory 
gabble, continued to flow in the same political 
channel. Gertrude heard, with weariness, the 
whole preliminaries of an active canva«.s fiilly dis- 
cussed across her, and while her imagination yet 
dwelt with delight on the melodious accents and 
impassioned sentiments which had so lately been 
poured into her ear, and found entrance to her 
heart, she mentally exclaimed — ^^ How impossi- 
ble would it be ever to love a man who can only 
talk of votes, seats, rolls, and qualifications T 



Certainly it is heaven upon earth to have a man*8 mind 
nunre in charity, rest in Providence, and turn upon the poles of 

Lord Bacok. 

" Well, what do you think of our member?" 
was Miss Pratt^s first salutation'to Gertrude, as 
they met next morning in their way to breakfast 
—then, without waiting a reply, " I thought you 
looked very wearied last night, and no wonder, 
for I declare my back was like to break with their 
politics. — IVe a notion you donH think he'^s likely 
to be any great acquisition as a member of the 
family, whatever he may be to the county — ^He ! 
he ! he !— I must tell Anthony Whyte that, — ^he 
will be so diverted ; — ^but come, my dear,^ taking 
her arm, '* we're too soon for breakfast yet, so we 
may just scent the morning air, as what do you 
call the mane's ghost says in the play — but you 


diould have something on your head^ you must 
not get that pretty white skin of your^s sun-burnt ; 
but we^ll not go farther than the Portico.— ^I look- 
ed into the room as I passed, and there was no- 
body there but Lord Rossville^ sitting as usual 
watching the tea-pot, like a clocking-hen. Ifsa 
great pity that he will make the tea himself. I de- 
clare I^m like to choke sometimes before I can 
get a drop, and, after all, it^s really just water be^ 
witched. — It^s a thousand pities, honest man ! that 
he will think he can do every thing better than 
any body else. — ^But here comes Edward Lyndsay 
from his walk. — I dare say he has been at some 
good turn ah*eady. — Good morning, Mr Edward ; 
where have you been strolling to this fine morn- 
ing ? Miss St Clair and I are just taking a little 
chat here, in the sun, tiU the breakfast'^s ready ; 
for, as Anthony Whyte says, I don^t like to de- 
scend to vacuity. — What do you think Miss St 
Clair says of our member, that she does not think 
him any great acquisition as a member of the fa- 
mily, whatever he may be as member for the 
county ; isn'*t that very good ?"^ 

Gertrude was about to disclaim the witticism, 
when Mr Lyndsay saved her the trouble^ 


<< So good,^ replied he, *^ that I am snrpiBad 
you should give the credit of it to any body qIao. 
—•Miss St Clair, I am sure, is incapable of mak- 
ing such a remark.^^ 

^^ Is that meant as a compliment to you or 
me, my dear ?'^ addressing Gertrude.—" But I 
wish you would explain, Mr Edward, what maket 
you think Miss St Clair incapable of saying 

^^ Because, as a physiognomist, I pronounee 
Miss St Clair incapable of making so ilLnatiured 
a remark upon one of whom she has as yet had no 
opportunity of forming an opinion.^ 

" And what do you call that remark of your 
own, pray, Mr Edward ?^ interrupted Miss Pratt, 
with considerable pique ; " for my part, I think it 
is as ill-natured a one as ever I heard."*^ 

^ You wished to hear the truth,^ said he with 
a smile ; " it is not my fault if it is not agree- 

" To tell you the truth, Mr Lyndsay, it's not 
by speaking what you call the truth upon every 
occasion, that people will ever make friends to 
themselves in this world. I never knew any of 
your plain-spoken people that didn't make twenty 


aiemies for one friend. I know nobody that 
likes to have what you call the truth told diem f 
do yoU) my dear ?^-^to Oertmde. 

" Yes*'' answered Gertrude, " I think I should 
like to hear the truth from an amiable person ; 
but the reason it is so disagreeaUe, I suppose, is, 
because people are always so cross when they 
E^ak what they call the truth, that it seems tm 
if they only used it as a cloak for their own ill 
humour and caprice, and a thousand other dead- 
ly sins.*" 

^^ Well, Fm sure, if youVe a mind to hear the 
truth, you Could not be in better hands, my dear, 
than your cousin's for it—But there's that abomi-* 
nable gong again— »we must really fly, for Lord 
Bossyille will be out of all patience ;" and ofi^ pat- 
tered Miss Pratt, leaying her companions to fol- 
low her nimble steps. Nobody bad yet appeared 
at the breakfast-table but Lord Rossville and M? 
Delmour, who had resumed the subject of the 
election with renewed vigour. Miss Pratt, seeing 
his Lordship so engrossed, had seized upon the 
tea-pot, and was eiyoying the luxury of filling 
her cup by stealth. Mr Lyndsay seated himself 


by Gertrude ; it was the place Colonel Delmour 
usually occupied, and she looked a little disap- 
pointed at seeing it filled by another-^he did 
not appear to notice it, but continued the conver- 

" I perfectly agree with you in what you were 
saying, of the use or abuse of truth,^ said he ; 
^^ but even that is not so dangerous as the delu^ 
sions of falsehood and flattery, commonly called 
politeness and admiration.^ 

" These are hard words to give to very agree- 
able things,*** answered Gertrude. 

" My quarrel is not with the things themselves,** 
said he, " but with their counterfeits.*^ 

" Yet, if every one were to tell another exactly 
what they thought of them, I dare say we should 
be all scratching each other's eyes out.** 

^^ Not if ours was the charity that thinketh 
no evil.** 

" Oh I that is to say, if we were all angels.*™ 

** No, it is to say, if we were all Christians.** 
Gertrude stared with some surprise, for her idea 
of a Christian, like that of many other people*s, 
was, that all were Christians who wer^ bom is 



rCliristeiidoin, had been baptized, learnt their 
creeds, and went now and then to church. 

<^ I flatter myself I am a Christian,^ said she ; 
^^ and yet I cannot help thinking there are peo- 
pie in the world who are very tiresome, very im- 
pertinent, and very disagreeable; yet, I donH 
think it would be a very Christian act were I to 
tdl them so."" 

^ Certainly not,'' answered Mr Lyndsay, with 
-a smile ; ^^ you may think them all those things ; 
but if you think of them, at the same time, in the 
'Spirit of kindness and Christian benevolence, you 
vnll pity their infirmities, and you will have no 
inclination to hurt their feelings, by telling them 
of faults which you cannpt maid.'' 

** But if I were asked— ^r suppose I were to 
ask you to tell me my faults ?'*^ 

^^ I should certainly endeavour to do it to the 
:be8t of my ability." 

** Well, pray, begin, I should like to have my 
character drawn in a Christian-like manner," said 
she, laughing. 

" Yes ; but I must have many sittings before 
I can attempt it — I am not one of those nimble 


artists who elm take striking Ukenesses in five 

^^ So much the better ; for they are idw^iyis hi- 
deoiis performances^— but how kn:^ will jm take 
to make a good fiill-length portrait of me^ for 1 
really long to see myself in my true colou»«-'»-as 
a mere mortal^^not as a goddess?^ 

^^ You run no such risk with me, I ftssuce 
you,^ said he ; ^* but as to the time, that must 
depend upon cireumstancea and opportunitiea-^- 
perhaps in a year."" 

^^ A year T exclaimed Glertnide. ^^ O hea- 
Tcns ! I shall die of impatience in a month->— to 
be a whole year before 1 hear of a single fiiult T 

<^ I did not say so^^ repUed Mr Lynd^y; 
^^ as errors, like straws, you know, always float 
on the surface, I shall be able to pick up plenty 
of them, I have no doubt, very soon— (if I have 
not got hold of one or two already)— but yob 
would not have me pronounce upon your charac- 
ter Scam them ? — ^many pearls of great price mky 
lie hid below." 

" Which, I'm a&aid, you will never discover,'' 

said Gertrude, laughing ; ^^ so, if my picture is 

not to be drawn till then, I fear I shall be wrink- 


led» and old, and ugly, before you have found a 
single gem to deck me with."" 

** I hope not,'' answered he ; ** yon say yon 
k>Te tamth and sincerity ; these are jewels in them* 
sehres, and their hghtmay lead even my dar&eiw 
ed eyes (as you seem to think diein) to discover 
nu»re. But to drop metaphor, and speak in plain 
UTOMH-wby, since we both profess to like tnitb, 
diottld we not agree to speak it to each other ?^ 

^^ With all my heart,'' answered Gartrude ; 
^^ but we must settle the preliminaries, draw op 
the co4e of laws, and swear to observe them :*^ 
in [the first place, then, we must make a solemn 
vow, on all occasions to speak the truth, and no* 
thiii^ but the truth, eaute qiiU caut^-^ia the se* 
cond {dace, that nothing so said is to give mortal 
offence to the one party or the other—in the third, 
that however disagreeable we may think each 
other, we are to make a point of declaring it in the 
dvilest and most Christian-like manner imagina^ 
Ue-— in the fourth plac e " 

*^ Beware," said Mr Lyndsay, intemiptiiig her, 
^^ of coming under any engagements, since Lord 
Bacon says, ^ It asketh a strong wit and a strong 
heart to know when to tell the tmtb,' and you 

VOL. I. M 


know not what a savage mm you have to deal 
with ; — ^no, let it be a discretionary compact, with 
mutual confidence its only guarantee ;^ and he 
held out his hand. Gertrude gave him her% and 
as she did so, she was struck, for the first time, 
with the bland and beautiftd expression of his 
countenance. '^ I never can fear you,^ said she 
with a smile ; — but the conversation was broken 
off> by the entrance of the rest of the family, and 
the consequent matin greetings that ensued. Co* 
lonel Delmour was the last who entered, and a 
shade of displeasure darkened his brow, at find* 
ing the seat he considered as exclusively his own, 
occupied by another. Gertrude observed his 
chagrin, and felt secretly flattered by it. The 
only vacant seat was one by Miss Pratt, who had 
hitherto restrained her tongue for the benefit 
of her ears, both of which had been on the fell 
stretch, the one to pick up certain little political 
pieces of information, which it had reason to sup« 
pose were not intended for it^ the other to mske 
itself master of what was going on at the opposite 
side of the table, between Miss St Clair and Mr 

It was wonderftd how well these two mem* 

CHAl'TfiR XVI. 179 

bers o(»itriyed to execute their respective ofBces^ 
though certainly the chief merit was due to their 
mistress, who had trained these, her faithful ter« 
vants, to such pezfection in their calling, that 
each of them, singly, could perform the work, 
and more than the work, of any ordinary pair of 
ears in the kingdom. What the industrious ear 
had collected, the active brain was not long of 
concocting, nor the nimble tongue of circulating. 
'^ You look very grave this morning. Colonel,^ 
said she, addressing her neighbour ; I wish you 
had been here a little sooner, it would have done 
your heart good to have seen and heard the fine 
flirtation that^s been carrying on over the way,^ 
•^with a significant nod to the opposite side of 
the table. ^^ I can tell you, Mr Edward and a 
certain &ir lady have been looking very sweet 
upon each other— -it^s not oflen he takes a flirting 
fit, but I^m really glad to* see your godly people 
can be just like their neighbours sometimes, and 
come as good speed too when they set about it. 
What do you think ?''— lowering her voice — 
^^ She^s going to sit to him for her picture-«-4i 
fiiU length, with pearls in her hair; and what do 
you think P^«— still lower— ^^ He^s to make her a 


present g£ the peark-*-! Ve a notion hia mother^ 
for I know she had a very fine set — He did not 
seem inclined (to tell the truth) to part with 
them so soon, for I heard him say something 
about a year; but^ says she, with her pretty 
winning snule, what^s the good of keeping things 
till one^s old, and bald, and toothless, and can^t 
enjoy them? So much &r French ease-*-who 
would expect that to look at her P-— 'But, my gra^ 
cious ! Colonel, do you see what youVe done ? 
spilt your whole cup of coffee upaa my good 
new gown — I wonder how you cantrived it-— and 
you're going to pour the cream upon me next,'"— - 
pushing her chair from him with the greatest ve- 
locity — " Ton my word, one would think you did 
it on purpose."" 

Colonel Dehnour made no attempt to vindicate 
himself from so foul an insinuaticm ; but, with hia 
shoulder turned to the offended fair, lounged over 
the Morning Post, as if quite unconseious of her 
presence. But, although he despised her too 
much to deign to express his disbelief of her com-* 
munication, he was secretly provoked at the good 
understanding that seemed to exist betweoi the 
cousins. He had too high an opmi^m of himself 


to haye any fear of Lyndsay as a riyal ; but he 
had his own private reasons for wishing to have 
him kept at a distance, at least, till he had secur- 
ed, beyond a doubt, the affections of Miss St 
Clair. Besides, he was one of those who disliked 
all interference with whatever object he chose to 
appropriate to himself, be it horse, hound, or heart. 
He, therefore, determined to put a stop to this 
growing intimacy, and to seize the first opportu- 
nity of bringing matters to an issue. 

In the presence of Colonel Delmour and Miss 
Pratt, it was seldom Mr Lyndsay had an oppor-. 
tunity of being duly appreciated, for in their 
company he was generally silent. Not that he 
had such a respect for their conversation as indu- 
ced him to play the part of a mere listener ; on the 
contrary, he gave little attention to either of them; 
but he was not a person to interrupt, or watch 
for a pause, or in any way seek to attract the notice 
of the company. The unobtrusive qualities of his 
mind, therefore, did not strike upon the fancy 
with the same glare as the" more dazzling charac- 
teristics of Colonel Delmour ; and where, as in 
the minute occurrences of domestic life, there are 
few or no opportimities of displaying the loftier and 

: mtiyrr***^- 



He*8 a terrible man John Tod, John Tod ; 

He*s » terrible man John Tod ; 

He aoolds in the houses 

He scolds at the door. 

He scolds on the very high road, John Tod, 

He scolds on the very high road, John Tod* 

He*s weel respeckit, John Tod, John Tod, 

He*s we^I respeckit, John Tod ; 

Wi* your auld strippit ooul, 

You look maist like a Aile ; 

But ihere*s nouse in the lining, John Tod, John Tod, 

But there's nouse in the lining, John Tod« 

Old Song* 

Thb cUy Was hot even to sultrin^sSy and nd- 
ther Mrs St Clair nor her daughter were incUn-* 
ed to converse beyond a passing remark now ahd 
then on the heat, dust, road, sun, &c. Both, in-> 
deed, were too agreeably occupied with their own 
meditations for any interchange of thought* The 
former was busy revolving how she was to carry 
unde Adam and his seventy thousand pounds by 

184 THS IlfHfiBlTAV^E. 

a c(mp de main ; and, as a prelimmary step, had 
provided herself with a French musical snuiF-box 
and a dozen of embroidered cambric pocket- 
handkerchiefs. But Mrs St Clair little knew 
the person she had to deal with, when she thought 
to propitiate him by any such sacrifices. Mr 
Adam Ramsay was a man of a fair characte^r^ and 
strong understanding, but particular temper, and 
unpleasing manners-— with a good deal of pene- 
tration, which (as is too often the case) served 
no other purpose than to disgust him with his 
own species. He had left home pennyless, at an 
early period of life, to push his foiftme in the 
world, and after having toiled and broiled for fif- 
ty years, he had returned to what was now be- 
come a stranger land, laden with wealth, which 
he had no longer even the wish to enjoy. He 
felt that he had lived in vain. He had no one to 
Iove--*no one to share in his possessions,— -and that 
only cordial which can give a relish even to the 
dregs of life was not his— the treasures he had 
laid up were all of this world ; and to a chfldlesB 
cynical old man, perhaps great wealth is even 
more galling than great poverty. Yet there were 
good points in his character, and perhaps, had he 


been a husband and fitther, and had his heart 
been kept afiye to the tender charities of life, he 
might hare proved an amiable man, and an 
agreeable member of society. He possessed 
fto>ng natural affections, which, though they 
had bun long dormant, were not yet extinct. It 
was said that in early youth he had loved and 
been beloved by one as poor and as fiiendless, 
and somewhat lower in degree than himself, and 
. that it was in the hope of gaining affluence for 
her he had crossed the seas, and sought his for- 
tanes in a foreign land. But many are the dis- 
afqpointments that precede the fulfilment of our 
hopes, and many a year rolled on, and found 
Mr Ramsay as poor as at the first ; till, despair-, 
ing- of ever being able to return and claim his 
bride, he wrote to release her from her promise 
0f awaiting his return. The fortune at length 
was made, but too' late — ^the gay dreams of 
youth were fled for ever ! — His mistress had mar- 
ried, and was dead, and the sanguine adven- 
ttmras stripling was grown into the soured misan- 
thropic old man. Such was the outline of uncle 
Adam's story, and little more remains to be said 


He lived much aknie, had all the hdbite of a 
recluge, and all the little peculiarities ivhich aie 
supposed to heloikg to single gentlemen of a oexw 
tain age. In particular, he had an extreme dis« 
like to receiying those delicate attentions which 
are sometimes so assiduously rendered to ihe rich 
and the childless* Not Tmion himself was mora 
tenacious in this respect than uncle Adam, ta 
more disposed to buffet all whom he suspected of 
a design to prey upon his hoards. The house he 
now inhabited was one he had taken as a tempo- 
rary residence on his first arrival ; and although 
he had bought a fine estate with a suitable manr 
sion in the immediate vicinity, and every day had 
purposed taking possession of it, yet each revolv- 
ing term found him sitting in the self-same par- 
lour, in the self-same chair, and in the self-same 
frame of mind. It was at this suburban viHa 
that the handsome equipage of the Earl of Ross- 
viUe now stopped. It was a small vulgar, star- 
ing red house, with a plot of long bottle^gre^ 
grass in front, and a narrow border of the coarsest 
of flowers, (or rather flowering weeds, interspers- 
ed with nettles,) growing thin and straggling 
from a green slimy-looking soil, and covered with 


dust from the road— ^firom which it was only se- 
parated by a railing. Mrs St Chur reddened 
with cjiame, as she marked the contemptuous 
air with which the consequential footman rapped 
on the humble door-— for bell or knocker there was 
none. The door was speedily flung open to its 
farthest extent, by a tai rosy stamping damsel, 
in a flaming gown and top-knots, who testified the 
greatest alacrity in doing the honours of the en- 

^^ What a habitation for a man with -seventy 
thousand pounds !^ exclaimed Mrs St Clair, as 
she entered ; but there w^as no time for pursuing 
her observations, for she was the next minute in 
the little parlour of uncle Adam. It was a small 
close room, with a meridian sun streaming fiiU 
into it, and calling forth to view myriads of 
^^ dancing motes that people the sun-beams,^ 
while innumerable hosts of huge flies buzzed and 
revelled in all the luxury of its heat, and an ex- 
piring fire, with its usual concomitants of dust and 
ashes, seemed fast sinking beneath the influence 
of the God of Day. A small dining-table, and 
a few hair-cloth chairs stuck against the walls, 
comprised the whole furniture of the room. A 


framed table of weights and measures, an old 
newspaper, and a parcel of dusty parchments, tied 
with a red tape, formed its resources and de- 
corations. Altogether it wore the comfortless 
aspect of a bad inn's worst parlour — a sort of 
place where one might pass five minutes while 
changing horses, but where there was no induce- 
ment even for the weary traveller to tarry. 

Mr Ramsay sat by the side of the expiring fire, 
seemingly contemplating the gaists and cinders 
which lay scattered over the hearth ; but he had 
somewhat the air of a man prepared (rather un^ 
willingly) to receive company. He was above 
the middle size, with high stooping shotdders, 
sharp cross-looking elbows, projecting far beyond 
his back, a somewhat stormy blue face, and little 
pale eyes, surmounted by shaggy white eye-brows. 
His ordinary head-piece, a striped woollen night- 
cap, had been laid aside for a capacious powder- 
ed peruke with side curls, and a large queue. 
To complete the whole, he was left-handed, which 
gave a peculiar awkwardness to his naturally un- 
gainly deportment. He welcomed Mrs St Clair 
with a mixture of cordiality and awkwardness, as 
if he wished to be kind, but did not know very 


veU how to Bet about it. She had too much 
manner, however, to allow him to remain under 
any embarrassment on that score; and was squees- 
isg uncle Adam's somewhat reluctant hand, and 
Bimling on his rugged visage, and uttering a 
thousand soft and civil things to his rather ayert- 
ed ear, when suddenly she stopped, for she fek 
that all was thrown away : her unde had fixed 
his eyes on Gertrude, and regarding her with vi- 
sible emotion, seemed unconscious of evety other 

^^ Who is that ?^ at length demanded he, ia an 
agitated voice. 

^^ Pardon me, my dear unde,^ replied Mrs 
St Clair; ^^ but, in my happiness at seeing you, 
I forgot that my daughter was likewise a stnaf;^ 
to you." 

^< Your daughter T exdaimed Mr Ramsay, 
" it's not possible T 

" Why so, my dear uncle ?" asked Mrs St 
Clair with a smile, and in fiill expectation of a 
gallant compliment on her own youth&l appear- 

*' She^s the very picture of — ; but you'll 
no mind Lizzie Lundie— bonny Lizzie Lundie."" 


He gave a sort of growling sigli, and a pause fol- 
lowed. Visions of former days seemed to crowd 
into the old man'^s mind, and he went on as if 
communing with himself. ^^ I little thought 
when I parted firae her, fifty year come Mar* 
tinmas, that I had ta^en my last look o^ Lizzie; 
and as little did I think, when I heard she was 
gane, that I should ever live to see her like in 
this warld — ^no that she just matches Lizsie uA* 
ther ;^ and something like a tear gleamed in his 
eye, as lie continued to gaze on the image of Ids 
youthful fancy. G^trude^s style of dress was 
such as helped to heighten the illusion: owix^ 
to the heat of the day, she had thrown off her 
bonnet, and the band that confined her hair wore 
almost the appearance of the snood which had 
been the prevailing fashion for damsels of lazzie^s 
d^ree in her day ; her throat also was uncover- 
ed, and the whole contour of the head was thus 
displayed at once in aU the simplicity of nature, 
and one more strikingly beautifid could scarcely 
be conceived. 

Confiised by the blunt admiration thus ex- 
pressed for her, Gertrude lodged to her mother, 
and, struck with the deadly paleness of her couut^ 


tenaiice, she hastily exclafaned, ^^ Mama, you 
are ill ;^ and Mrs St Clair, gasping for breath, 
gunk almost lifeless in her daughter's arms. — 
<^ Air — air^^was all she could articulate; and that 
certainly was the one thing needftd in uncle 
Adam'^s apartment, for the atmosphere was in* 
deed suffocating. The door and window were 
mstantly thrown open ; Gertrude held a glass of 
water to her mother's pallid lips ; and Mr Ram- 
8ir|r stuffed a bunch of southernwood into her 
powerless hand. At length these restoratives ap- 
peared to produce their effects, and Mrs St Clair 
slowly reyived. Due apologies were of course 
made and accepted; the uncommon heat of the day 
was much commented on, and the closeness of the 
room delicately hinted at. Some refreshments, not 
of the choicest description, were now brought in 
by the great awkward heavy-footed maid-servant ; 
and Mr Ramsay, taking a glass of wine, drank 
a welcome to his niece on her return to Scotland, 
<^ and to the bonny creature youVe brought with 
you,'* added he, again fixing his eyes on Ger- 
trude. '^ After all,'' continued he, *^ the thing's 
not impossible-^Lizzie was a relation of ours — 
a distant one to be sure ; let me see — Lizzie's^ 


father and my father were oousm-germains^ bakas 
— ^but thaf 11 no do, for if s by the other side o* 
the hoofi — ^it was by my father.^ 

Mrs St Clair''s colour rose to the deepest crim- 
son, and she seemed struggling to subdue her 
fbdings. At length, making an ^ort ai sei^con* 
trol, she said with affected pleasantry-^^^ I bwe 
no doubt my daughter has great reason to be flat- 
tered at the resemblance you have discovered tn 
her — ^but, my dear uncle, you know there are 
certain pr^udices— certain notions that some pook 
pie entertain — In short, the thii^ to be talked of 
amongst ourselves is very well ; and it is very flal« 
tering to me that my dai^hter^s looks should afford 
you pleasure — ^but I own L I should besoxxy 
— I would rather that a report of such a reaeofr* 
blance were not to reach the Rossville fStmily— ^ 
they now consider my daughter as one of them-« 
selves ; and their pride might be hurt, you know, 
and a prejudice created, that might prove highly 
detrimental to Grertrude^s best interests/^ 

" Set them up with their pride T cried Mr 
Ramsay — ^all softer ^notions giving way to indig-^ 
nation ; '^ their pride hurt, indeed^ at being com- 
pared to Lizzie Lundie ! — There's no a Rossville 



or a St Clair among them that e'er I saw was fit 
to tie Lixzie Lundie's shoe — the Queen upon the 
throne might have thought it an honour to be 
compared to Lizrie;*" — ^and the litde chamber 
seioned as though it would not contain him in his 
wrath, as he paced up and down its narrow bounds, 
with liis hands crossed behind his back : all shy- 
ness and embarrassment had vanished in this burst 
of passidn, and uncle Adam stood revealed in his 
own character. Then suddenly stopping—" And 
what would ha'e come o' ye if Lizzie Lundie had 
been what I ance thought she would ha'e been-— 
my wedded wife ? — What would your Rossvilles 
ha'e done then ? — ^Would you ha'e thought it a 
disgrace then, that your daughter should ha'e 
been likened to your uncle^s wife ?^ 

** Oh ! this is too much !"* exclaimed Mrs St 
Clair,. bursting into tears. 

** What's too much ?^ cried he, continuing to 
walk up and down in great discomposure. Then 
suddenly stopping, and softening at sight of his 
niece's distress—'^ Come, Come — What's a' this 
for? — ^waes me, ye ha'e sufiered little in the warld, 
if the hasty word o' an auld man can set ye off 
this way*^ye'll ken me better by and bye than to 

VOL. I. N 


mind a^ that I say ;^ — then patting G^trnde on 
the shoulder, as she hung over her mother — 
^^ It^s you that has made us cast out, and it^s you 
that maun make us ^gree."" 

Gertrude took her mother'^s hand, and pat it in 
her unde'*s— he took it kindly, and Mrs St Chdr, 
as soon as she found voice, said*— ^^ Excuse me, 
my dear uncle, I am ashamed of my weakness— 
but my nerves are now so shattered, and my spi- 
rits are not what they once were— I have a diffi- 
cult part to play, and it is not surprising if— 
In short, dependent as I am on the relations of 
my child*— -and that dear child'*s interest so much 
at stake too — ^you cannot wonder if I am somcL 
times driven— if I sometimes stoop — ^if I diould 
sometimes tremM o ^ 

Mrs St Clair seemed at a loss to finish — ^but 
her uncle s^ved her the trouble — ^* Aye, aye^ 
you have a proud thrawn pack to deal wi\ I be- 

^' Then you understand, my dear uncle^ the 
reason of my wishing that ^ 

*^ Aye, aye— -ye needna be feared for me— but 
I maun aye think the likeness maist wonderful — 
moist wonderfiil— most wond^rful*^— repeated be 


two or three times as he contemplated, and seve- 
rally enumerated every feature, summing up the 
whole with — " Since I saw Lizzie Lundie, I've 
never seen the woman that I thought worth the 
looking at till now.'' At that moment a smart 
female figure, feathered and furbelowed, entered 
the little yard, and approached the house.-— 
" There's ane o' the fule trihe," cried he ; ^' my 
bonny niece. Miss Bell Black. — I ne^er see that 
eraatur that I dinna wish myself blind, and deaf, 
mid doited.'^ And thereupon entered Miss Bell. 



Hehad a sowie behaTiour, and a tongue immodentBlj free and 
ftiOof tanntin^ 


' << What's brought you here. Miss Belir 
his salutadon on entering; but nowise daunted 
with what, indeed,, she was well accustomed to, 
she boldly shook hands with all aroundj and then 
showing a small basket — ^^ I have brought you 
some very fine strawberries, unde ; they are the 
first we have had in our garden; and I assure you, 
I have had much ado to keep them from the chil- 
dren for you ;^ — and with a consequential air, she 
disclosed some dozen or two of very so-so look- 
uig strliwberries. 

** You had very little to do then,^ said Mr 
Ramsay — ^^ I wad na gi^e a bawbee for a"* the ber- 
ries in your garden — ^so ye may just tak them 
back to whar ye brought them frae ; or stay, since 
ye ha'e robbed your brithers and sisters o^ them, 


puir tlungs, there^s a barber^s bairn twa doors aff 
that wad maybe be glad o^ them—it^s lying in the 

" Ton my word, uncle,'' said Miss Bell in great 
indignation, '^ I have something else to do than 
to pick strawberries for barber^s brats, indeed.^-^ 
But uncle Adam, going to the door, called the 
maid, and giving her the strawberries, directed 
lier to ^^ carry the berries to Rob Rattray's bairn, 
and to ask how he was.'' Miss Bell prudently 
turned a deaf ear to the message, and was apolo- 
^zing, with all her powers of eloquence, to Mrs 
St Clair and her daughter, for not having been 
to visit them — " But the truth is," said she, with 
a well got up air of i^odesty, ** that, in my situa- 
tion, visiting is otit of the question. If I were to 
go to one place, I should have to go everywhere, 
and the Major has so many connections in the 
country, who, of course, would expect me to come 
to them, that it would be extremely unpleasant 
in my situation, where the thing is so well known. 
This, I assure you, is the only place I ever go to, 
as I think it a positive duty — (lowering her voice) 
—to pay attention to my uncle, poor man, and I 
am jthe only one of the family who understands 


his waye, and can manage him.^ Mr Ramsay 
baring for the moment appeased the antipathy 
he bore his niece by the insult he had offered her, 
f?as now restored to something like good humour. 
« Weel, Miss Bell," said he, ** what have you 
made of your nawbob'-^your swam — ^your loveyer 
— ^your what-do-ye-call-him ?" 

'^ If yoli mean the Major," said Miss Bell with 
dignity, *^ he walked into town with me, and is 
gone to look at a pair of carriage-horses that are 
for sale at the White Bear just now ; I suppose 
he will be here in a little ;'* — then drawing back 
firom the window with a face of alarm, as a carriage 

" I really wish, uncle, if you mean to remain 
here, you would get a blind foi^7our window, for 
every body is seen in this room, and in my situa* 
tion, it is not very pleasant, I assure you, to be 
exposed to everybody that passes ;-*-that was the 
Boghall carriage that passed just now, and they 
must think it very odd to have seeii me sitting 
here when I declined an invitation to dinner 
there for to-morrow, upon the plea that I went 
nowhere at present." 

" Then what brings you here, if you're no fit 


to be seen P^ demanded uncle Adam in a most 
wrathful accent. 

** I must confess, my dear uncle,^ said Mrs St 
Clair, glad of an opening for expressing her sen- 
timents, and, at the same time, softening the tone 
of the conversation, <^ this house does not seem 
quite suitable for you.^ 

" What ails the house ?'' asked he sharply. 

** I beg pardon, I understood (perhaps I was 
misinformed) that you were the proprietor of a 
charming place in diis neighbourhood.'*' 

« Weel ?^ This was put in so startling a man- 
lier, that Mrs St Clair's courage failed her, and 
she feared to reply ;— rnot so Miss Bell. 

" Well ! to think of any body in their senses 
living in this little, vulgar, shabby hole, when 
they have such a house as Bloom-Park standing 
empty — I assure you, uncle, it has a very odd ap- 
pearance in the eyes of the world.** 

<^ Miss Bell Black, you that's such a wise, sen- 
sible, weel informed woman, that kens aw thing, 
will you just ha'e the goodness to tell me, what 
are the eyes of the warld, and whar do they stand? 
For muckle I ha'e heard of the eyes o' the warld, 
but I ha'e never been able to see them yet ;'' and 


Mr Ramsay fixed his upon her, while he advanc- 
ed his fiioe abnost dose to her, and pat his hands 
on his knees, in a manner that seemed to say, 
^^ Answer me this before you stir.^ 

Miss Bdl hesitated a little— <' Why, I caa^w. 
ly tell yon, nnde^ that Lord Fairacre was quite 
confounded when the Major told him you had 
never taken possession of Bloom-Park yet, and 
said it was most extraordinary that you should 
continue to live in a house that was hardly good 
enough for a dog-kennel ; and Boghall, who was 
present, said, he did not believe the whole house 
was the size of his kitchen, and the Major him- 
self I know thinks ^ 

^* And so these are the eyes of the world I"" 
cried Mr Ramsay, with a sort of growling sardo- 
nic laugh ; ^^ pretty eyes they are, to be sure, to 
drive a man out of his ain bouse !— The tane a 
poor silly spendthrift, the tether a great gorman- 
dizing swash,, and tbe third — but how comes the 
warld to have but three eyes? — can you no mak 
out a fourth? — I beg your pardon, I suppose your 
ain was to be the fourth, and that maks aw right, 
for then ye can gi^e the warld twa faces ; Fair- 
acre's and Boghall on the tae face, Major Waddell 


and Miss Bell Black on the Either ;^ — ^then in a 
lower key, and muttering to himself, ^^ Spend- 
thrifts and ne^erdoweels on the tae side, fiiles 
and tavpies on the thither, a true picture o^ the 

Any other than Miss Bell would certainly have 
^loefn in here ; but Miss Bell was one of those 
gifted mortals who are quite invulnerable to the 
shafts of envy, hatred, or malice, when it is their 
int^est to be so ; and though she. did look a little 
hot and disconcerted for a few minutes, she quick- 
ly rallied, and resumed — 

^^ I assure you, uncle, whatever you may think, 
Ae opinion of the world is not to be despised.^ 

<^ Miss Bell Black, I have lived rather longer 
in the world than you have done, and IVe seen 
rather mair o^t than you'^re ever likely to see — and 
I would nae gi'^e that,^ snapping his fingers, ^^ for 
either it^s gude word or if s ill ; it canna«say that 
ever I oppressed them that were beneath me, — 
or cringed to them that were aboon me,—- or that I 
ever wranged ony creature o^ a boddle, — or that I 
ever said the thing I didna think ; and if either 
you or your warld think I*m to be dictated to in 
my ain house, youVe much mistaken,"^ 


** Well^ nncle^ I can only say^ I think it is s. 
greftt pity that so fine a plaoe as Bloom-Park 
should be standing empty ; and since you seem 
resolved not to live at it yourself, tfaere^s many a 
one, I assure you, would be glad to take it off 
your hands. The Msgor has been lookii^ at 
Elm Grove — ^but I think there is no comparison 
between Bloom-Park and it.^ 

'< What then ?"" demanded Mr Ramsay. 

^ O, nothing. Only if you had any thoughts 
of letting it> it is such a Paradise, that ^ 

^^ I could be at nae loss for an Adam and Eve 
to put in it,*^ interrupted her unde ; ^^ your naw- 
bob and you for instance^ — with a growling grin ;. 
--— '^ but I can tell you, ye^U no play your gambols 
there if I can help it.*^ 

Miss Bell looked very indignant as she replied, 
^ As to that, the Major cares very little about the 
matter ; if I am pleased, that is all he is anxious 
about, and the rent is no object — ^but I find it very 
^fficult to get a place to suit us in every respect 
-*-but here is the Major himself,^ — and the Ma- 
jor was presently ushered in. Mr Bamsay re- 
ceived him with tolerable civility, and Mrs St* 
Clair, desirous of receiving his vote at the ap- 


proacbing election, ivas preparing the way by a 
soft speech about nothhig. But Miss Bell never 
permitted the Major to sprak to, or look at^or 
listen to any body else when she was present, and 
she therefore c&Ued him off with — ** Well, Major, 
did you see the carriage-horses, and what do you 
think of them?'' 

^' They seem good serviceable horses— not par- 
ticularly handsome," replied he. 

^* What colour P — I'll thank you for a glass of 
water, Major."" 

<* Pray — allow me to put a little wine in it.*" 

^^ The least drop*— and you think they will do ? 
—Oh i not so much.'* 

^* That is not for me to decide," replied the 
Major, with a bow — ^which was graciously ac- 
Icnowledged with a smile. ^' Perhaps you will 
take a look of them yourself.^'' 

** Why, in my situation,'' — ^in a modest key— 
*^ I hardly think I should like to go to the White 
Bear-*— Major, will you take this glass .'^" 

<^ But I shall desire Xhe ostler to bring them up 
here, 'tis but a step from the stable s " 

*^ Pm for none of your horses brought to my 
door," cried Mr Ramsay ; ^^ it will be through the 


town I^m setting up my chaise next, and a bonny 
hullybaloo tfaere^ll be,**^ and he paced the room in 
great perturbation at the bare suppositicm of such 
a thing. 
' *^ My dear Sir'* — ^began the Major, but he was 
cut. short with — 

** Now I'm for none of your horses at my 

" Bless me ! uncle,*' cried Miss Bell, " I think 
you may be very well pleased to get the credit of 
a carriage at such an easy rate." 

^' Great credit to be sure ! to get the credit of 
being an auld ostentatious fule." 

" Such nonsense, uncle ! — at any rate, I 
thought you did not care what the world said of 

*' Yon thought !" repeated uncle Adam, with 
the most sovereign contempt ; " and what entitles 
you to think ? — but ye need say nae nudr aboot 
it — ^there's to be nae horses brought to my door. 
If ye maun ha'e horses, ye maun gang to the 
horse-market for them, like other folk — I'm no to 
ha'e my house turned into a White Bear." 

^* My dear Sir" said the Major. 

" In my situation''— rintemipted Miss Bell — 


^< it would have a very odd appearance in the 
eyes of the world***— But here Mrs St Clair in-' 
terposed, by offering to chaperon her niece to the 
White Bear in Lord Rossville^s carriage, hoping 
to be repaid for this dvOity by securing the Ma- 
jor^s vote. The offer, after a little affected demur^ 
was accepted, and the Major was dispatched to 
have the horses in readiness. 

<^ I really think, uncle^ you might dispense with 
afire now,^ remarked Miss Bell as she rose to de- 

^^ Do ye ken naething else I could dispense 
wr P^ demanded Mr Ramsay, with a look and em- 
phasis that might have made a tortoise fly : — ^not 
so Miss Bell, who still lingered in the desperate 
hope of showing her consequence, and proving 
her influence over imcle Adam and his seventy 
thousand pounds. 

" Well, uncle, when are we to see you at 

" I would prefer my claim for a visit,*' said 
Mrs St Clair, with her most winning smile; 
^' but Lord Rossyille intends himself to have the 
pleasure of calling upon you, and ^ 

" In hopes of getting my vote,** interrupted 


Mr Ranusy, impattently ; ^^ but he may just save 
himself the trouUe — I^m bo gaun to be hunted 
out o^ my senses by your election hcnmcUu— III 
gi'^e my vote to wha I like, or may be Vll keep it 
to mysel— but there^s ae thing I can tell you, it^s 
no to be had for the asking/^ 

Mrs St Clair prudently receiTed this rebuff in 
mience ; but Miss Bell plucked up fresh spirit at 
witnessing another^s discomfiture, and taking her 
unde by the breast of the coat, and drawing him 
back, she began in an under tone of voice, aa if 
desirous of not being overheard, — 

<^ By the bye, uncle, talking of votes, tfaere^s 
one thing that I feel very anxious about, and 
that is, that the Major and you should concert 
something together as to your votes — ^it would be 
extremely awkward, I think, if you were io take 
different sides, and have a very odd appearance 
in the eyes of the world.^ 

Whatever unde Adam^s thoughts might be, 
his looks portaided a storm ready to burst forth ; 
but as Gertrude turned towards him, to wish him 
good morning, his features relaxed, and his firown 
gradually softened into something like a smile. 

" The eyes of the world r repeated he ; "I 


vould na gi> a glisk 6* thae boniiy eeu of your\ 
for aw the eyes o^ the world put thegither,— -and 
dinna you^ my dear^ let the eyes o^ the world, 
scare you, as they ha^e done mony a ^me, fiae 
your ain happmess. Now, fare ye weel^ my daw- 
tie,'^ patting her shoulder, <^ an*' FU say to you 
what I wad na say to mony — I^U aye be glad to 
aee you, ctnae when you like— &re ye w ed - ■ 
Qude morning to you. Miss Bdl ; and ye may iak 
the eyes o^ the world on your back, and nnickle 
gude may th^do ye ;^— and, with a laugh -of de- 
rision, uncle Adam saw his visitors diive off^ and 
returned to his little dusty sunny parlour, date 
with the triumph of havii^ defied die world and 
its eyes. 

But before parting with Mr Ramsay, we must 
here observe, that he is not the only one who has 
Mtempted to walk as if uncontrolled by the scan 
of that dread power, commonly called die eyes of 
Ae world. Few, if any, however, have ever ar- 
TiTed at entire emancipation from its influence^ 
which extends more or less over all mankind. 
Undo Adam flattered himself that he was one 
of the happy few who had escaped from its thral- 
dom — ^but, alas ! poor man, its yoke was still upon 


him, and, unconscious of its chains, he hugged 
himself in his freedom. He cared not, indeed, 
that the world should call him a miser— he cared 
not that the world should call him a churl — ^he 
cared not that the world should call him odd- 
he cared not that the world should say he lived 
in a mean house, or wore a shabby hat, or an old- 
fashioned wig ; but he cared lest the world should 
think he cared for the world— or lest the world 
should say that he was vain, or proud, or osten- 
tatious, or expensive; and it was this whidi 
made him often deny himself many a little com- 
fort, many a harmless gratification, many an in- 
nocent desire he had in common with that world 
he so much despised. To be free from the eyes 
of the world has been the aim of many, but the 
attainment of few. Man is not bom to be free, 
and when all restraint is laid aside, the wicked- 
ness of the human heart displays itself in the 
most hideous forms. ""Tis to the Christian alone 
that such freedom belongs, and he only can 
say, " Je crains Dieu et rCai point iTautre 

10 • 



A merry going out often bringeth a moumfal return ; and a 
joyful morning a sad wening. 

Thomas a Keh^is. 

During their progress to the White Bear, Miss 
Bell indemnified herself for the mortifications she 
had received from her uncle, by expressing her- 
self in terms of the greatest pity and contempt 
for him. 

" Poor man !" said she, " I really feel for him, 
— ^for you must know it is alleged I am his great 
favourite ; and when that is the case, of course 
one will put up with a great deal. Indeed, for 
my part, I know his temper so well, I never should 
think of being affironted at any thing he could say; 
but I own I am sometimes afraid of the Major-— 
a man of his rank is not to be tampered with-*-and 
he has such a high spirit, there is no saying how 
he might resent any thing the least like disrespect 

VOL. I. o 


to me, though I know my poor uncle is far from 
meaning any thing of the kind. It is entirely his 
manner, for I have been told he speaks very hand- 
somely of me behind my back ; and when that is 
the case, one should not mind what is said to their 
face. However, in my situation, it is certainly 
not pleasant, and when I am a married woman, 
the thing must be put a stop to." 

Here Mrs St Clair put a stfip to that subject, 
by introducing the one uppermost in her thoughts, 
that of the Election, and requesting her niece to 
use her influence with her lover on the occasion. 
But Miss Bell, like all fools, had her share of cun- 
ning, as well as of consequence ; and she was 
aware that the more doubts and difficulties she 
could attach to the Major's vote, the more the 
Migor's importance and her own importance would 
be increased ; and she therefore made answer,-*- 

" Why, really aunt, to tell you the truth, the 
Major has a very difficult part to act ; and it will 
require no small management, I^assure you, both 
in him and me, to avoid giving offence to one side 
or the other. Connected as he is with the Faixacre 
and Boghall families, it will be a strong step in 
him to give his vote to the opposite party. At 


< the mme tiiae, I know I have only to say the 
word to secure him for my fiiends ;— but as I said 
to him, the world might reflect upon me, were I 
to make use of my influence in so important a 
matter. Besides, you know, aunt, I can say no- 
thing till the Major has be^i waited upon by 
Lord Bossville, and has been paid proper atten- 
tion to by the family ; and it would also be right, 
I think, if some of the ladies were to be introduced 
to his sister, Mrs Fairbaim, a Tery sweet woman, 
who lives a little way from this.^ But here the 
carriage drove up to the White Bear, where nei- 
ther the Major nor the horses were to be se^i ; 
but they were told both would be forthcoming pre- 
sently. There was nothing for it, therdfore, but 
to wait patiently in the midst of the usual assem- 
blage that is to be seen lounging at an inn door-« 
hostlers, drivers, stable-boys, beggars, waiters, tnu 
vellers, &c. &c. &c. 

" This is very unpleasant,'' said Miss Bell. 
" I wonder how the Major could think of expos- 
ing a person in my situation in this manner. I 
am sure I would rather have gone without car- 
riage-horses, than have had all these peopleVeyes 
upon me. There is one man, I declare he stares 


in such a maimer, I don^t know where to look — 
I wonder what he means.-^! really wish he would 
bestow his attention on somebody else ;-^but, per- 
haps, cousin, he^s one of your French beaux P^ 

Mrs St Clair and Gertrude both looked in the 
direction pointed out by Miss Bell, and both were 
struck by the appearance of the person in ques- 
tion, or rather by the earnest scrutinizing lode 
with which he r^arded the party ; for, although 
handsome, there was nothing very striking eithcar 
in his dress or figure — ^nothing that was even 
indicative of the station to which he might be 
supposed to belong. He was a man seemingly 
turned of thirty, but might be more, with fair but 
sun-burnt complexion — flight hair-^handsome, 
though rather hawk nose, and keen bright blue 
eyes. — Taken singly, his features had no pecu- 
liarity in them ; but there was something in the 
general expression of the countenance of rather a 
marked and unpleasing character. 

^^ I have surely seen that faae before,^ said 
Mrs St Clair, endeavouring to recollect when and 

'* Tm sure he won^t forget some of ours,*" said 
Miss Bell ; '^ for I really never saw any thing so 


impadent as the maimer in which he stares ; and 
such a shabby-looking creature, all covered with 
dust ! I dare say he is just off ihe top of some 
coach— -I^m sure if the Major catches him staring 
so impudently at m o b ut here comes the 
Major and the carriage-horses— don^t they look 
very well ?''— and then ensued a colloquy between 
the lovers. 

** How do you like your steeds, Isabella ?'*' 

^^ Not mine, Major-— >you know I have nothing 
to do with them— 'but what do you think of them 

^^ My thoughts must be guided entirely by 
your taste.*^ 

^^ Very gallant, indeed !^«— and so forth in the 
usual style of some such silly pair. 

The strainer all the while kept his staticm, af- 
ter asking a question of one of the servants ; but 
his looks, which, at first, had wandered from one or 
other of the party, finally rested on Grertrude, 
with an expression which it was impossible to 
comprehend or define. It was neither admira- 
tion, nor curiosity, nor pleasure, nor any of the 
common emotions which a stranger might be sup- 


posed to entertain, but his countenance assumed 
a sort of smile of exultation no less strange than 
offensire. In some displeasure at so rude and 
persevering a gaie, Grertrude raised her hand to 
pull down the blind, when, suddenly sprin^ng 
forward, he Uiid his hand on the door of the ca». 

" What insolence r exclaimed Mrs St Clair. 
The stranger looked at her for a moment with a 
bitter, contemptuous smile-— then said — 
^^ I would speak with you, Madam.^ 
" Speak, then — say what is your business P'* 
answered she somewhat impatiently. 

^' You would not wish me to declare it in the 
presence of these ladies, I am siue,^ replied the 
man, with a still more familiar look and manner. 
Miss Bellas body and soul were both half out of 
the opposite side of the carriage, as she leaned 
over communing with the Major. Mrs St Clair, 
therefore, answered haughtily-^ 

^' You can have nothing to say to me that my 
daughter may not hear.''^ 

^' Indeed !"" exclaimed the stranger in an ironi- 
cal tone — " Is she then — — '' Mrs St Ckir invo- 


lunUrily bent her head towards him, and the rest 
of the sentence was whispered in her ear, when, 
uttering a hi^-*8tifled shriek, she sunk back pale, 
trembling, and convulsed. 

^^ What's the matter ?^ cried Miss Bell, turn- 
ing round. 

*^ Mama has been frightened by that strange^ 
looking man,'' answered Gertrude, in a low voice. 

^^ Bless me T cried Miss Bell, '* such non- 
sense, to be frightened for any man when the Ma- 
jor is here"— then in a loud key—" Major, I 
wish you would ask that person what he wants P'' 

" Not for the world !" exclaimed Mrs St Clair, 
suddenly starting up in the most extreme agita* 
tion — " I know him — I have seen him before — 

I 1 must speak to him myself," gasped she, 

as she motioned to have the carriage door open- 

" Oh, mama !" cried Gertrude, taking her mo- 
therms trembling hand to detain her^— " you are 
unable«*-allow me ;" but her moth^ seemed not 
to hear her, as, with the assistance eS'the servants^ 
she alighted, and, with an unsteady step, drew 
near the stranger, who had withdrawn a few 
paces from the carriage, apart from the bystanders. 



^^ Good gracious f exclaimed Miss Bell, in 
a whisper to Gertrude-—^' I see my aunt is terri- 
fied at the thoughts of inyolving the Major with 
that man, and» to be sure, if he had only seen 
how he stared at me, I dare say he would have 
knocked him down, so it^s better she should speak 
to him herself, as I am under her protection at 
present, you know."^ 

Gertrude made no reply, and Miss Bell, too 
much interested in her carriage-horses, to be- 
stow her attention on any mere human concerns, 
quickly returned to the discussion of hoofs, tails, 
manes, &c. Mrs St Clair, meanwhile, having ex- 
changed a few words with the stranger, returned 
to the carriage^ still bearing visible signs of great 
mental disquiet. 

" So, aunt, you have very soon disposed of your 
beau,^ began Miss Bell,no lessdefidentin common 
observationthanindelicacy. ^' Dear me, arewe driv- 
ing away, and nothing settled about the carriage- 
horses yet, and whereas the Major ? — Major — Ma- 
jor — stop, driver, for thB Major;" andpresently the 
Major^s willow-green visage presented itself, pant- 
ing with the exertion of running after the carriage. 

^^ I can make nothing of that fellow," said he, ad- 


dressiiig Mrs St Clair; ^^he seemsa mostconfound- 
ed insolent dog. If I had been a justice of the 
peace, I should certainly have committed him.'" 

<^ I think you would have done quite right,^ said 
Miss Bell ; '^ and I really think, aunt, you were 
a great deal too soft with him— What did he say 
to you. Major ?^ 

^^ O, he was confoundedly impertinent, and if 
I had had my bamboo, I should certainly have 
laid it across his shoulders.**^ 

^^ Well, I dare say it was better thatyougotoutto 
speak to him yourself, than that the Major should 
have taken him inhand; but he would have deserv- 
ed it,^ said Miss Bell, ^^ if it had only beenfor his im- 
pudence in staring atmein the manner he did — ^but, 
by-the-bye, did not you say you knew him, aunt ?**' 

Mrs St Claires colour had undergone many va- 
riations during this conversation, and Gertrude 
thought she read torture in every feature and li- 
neament of her countenance. But in a voice which 
she vainly tried to render firm and composed, she 
replied, ^^ I have seen him before, only once, and 
that under circumstances of distress in my hus- 
band'^s ^^ Here her emotion choked her utter- 
ance, and Miss Bell and the Major, who were no 


nice observers, ascribed her agitation to the only 
legitimate source of a widow^s tears, the remem^ 
brance of her departed lord ; and not being at all 
in a mood to sympadmein any such sorrowfiil feel- 
ings, Miss Bell proposed to alight and walk home 
with her lover, which was readily acceded to by 
her aunt. ^' I trust I shall soon have the plea- 
sure of presenting Mrs WaddeU to you,^ said the 
Major in a half whisper to Mrs St Clair. 

" Upon my word, Major, you are too bad,^ 
said his fair, affecting to turn away in displea- 

" Have you bespoke your cousin^s good offi- 
ces on the occasion, my love ?*" asked the inamo- 
rato, in still softer accents. 

" No — I really. Major-— you know there is no 
hurry — — *'* 

^^ I beg your pardon, I know just the re- 
verse,^^ replied the gallant Major ; but Mrs St 
Clair, sick of their vulgar airs, here wished the 
happy pair good morning ; and making a sign to 
the servant, the carriage bounded away, leaving 
them far behind. Gertrude naturally expected 
that her mother would now give some explanation 
of the strange mysterious scene that had taken 


place, though she had too much delicacy to ex* 
press ^ny curiosity on the subject ; but Mrs St 
Clair remained silent and abstracted during the 
whole drive, and was only roused from her mus- 
ings by the sudden stopping of the carriage, as it 
drew up at the castle. 

" Home already r exclaimed she, looking 
round as if awakened from a dream — ^then in a 
languid oppressed voice, *^ Gertrude, I am ill 
— -but I want no attentions,'' waving her off; "they 
can do me no good.'' Colonel Delmour, who had 
been lounging on the lawn with his dogs, was 
now hastening towards them. " Gertrude," con- 
tinued she, grasping her daughter's hand, — " be 
silent on the events of this day, as you value my 
/i/fe." Gertrude shuddered, but the next moment 
her hand was pressed in that of Colonel Del- 
mour, as he assisted her to alight, and her mo- 
ther's fearfrd words were almost driven from her 
thoughts by the raptures he expressed at her re- 
turn. His words were too delightful not to be lis- 
tened to, and she loitered a few minutes on the 
steps. " Is it possible," thought she, as she looked 
on her lover, " that this elegant, graceful being 
can belong to the same species with an uncle 


Adam, or a Major Waddell !^ Colonel Dehnour 
saw that he had lost nothing by her absence, and 
as her mother turned to call her, he Tentured to 
whisper somewhat of a more serious import than 
he had yet done;-— Gertrude blushed, smiled, 
and was gone. 

CHAP'l Ell XX. 821 


What nlenoe hides, that Jmowest thou. 


On joining her mother in her apartment, Ger- 
trude found her walking to and firo in that man- 
ner which phiinly indicates great mental disquiet 
She continued to pace backwards and forwards 
for some time, as if lost in thought, then sudden- 
ly stopping, she said, somewhat abruptly — ** Ger- 
trude, do you remember your nurse ?" 

^^ Ah ! mama, can I ever forget her !^ replied 
her daughter, tears springing to her eyes at the 
remembrance of all the care and tenderness she 
had experienced for years from the faithfiil crea- 

" Yes, I know you were very fond of her, and 
she of you. Well, the stranger who caused me so 
great an alarm to-day— was her husband.^ 

*^ Her husband, mama !^ repeated Gertrude. 


^' I thought he had been dead many years 
ago ?'' 

^* I thought so too ; but unfortunately it is not 
80 — I say unfortunately, for he is likely to prove 
a troublesome appendage to us— those sort of 
people are always unreasonable ; and he seems 
to think his wife^s care and attention to you, and 
her long services in the family, give him a claim 
upon our gratitude, which I fear I shall not find 
easy to answer. In short, he seems a needy ra- 
pacious man, urgent for money, which I have not 
to give, and yet am loth to refiise.^ 

** It is certainip my duty to do something for 
him, mama,'' answered her daughter; " but, 
you know, I have nothing in my own power — all 
I can do is to speak to my \mcle for him " 

^* No, no," cried Mrs St Clair, impatiently, 
" that will never do ;" and she resumed her pac- 
ing up and down. 

" Why may I not ask Lord Rossville to assist 
him, mama?" inquired Gertrude, in some sur- 
prise. " Surely the husband of my nurse, of one 
whom I loved so dearly, has a right to expect 
something from us P" 

" Something— yes, €omething-^but what is 



that something to be P — How much money have 
you got at present, Gertrude ?^ 

Her daughter named the sum, which was a 
very trifling one. " Good heavens ! what shall 
I do r exclaimed her mother, with the look and 
accent of despair ; " how shall I ever be able to 
raise a sufficient sum ^ 

** Dear mama ! why should you distress your- 
self so much about it ?— only sufler me to speak 
to my uncle.'*' 

" Gertrude, you will drive me mad — ^have I 
not told you that it would be destruction to me 
to breathe a syllable of this matter to any human 
being ?" 

" Destruction, mama !" repeated her daughter 
in astonishment, not unmixed with terror at her 
mother's vehemence. 

" Bring me what money you have— every sous, 
and no questions — ^you will perhaps know all soon 
enough,'' murmured she, throwing herself into a 
chair, as if exhausted with the violence of con- 
tending emotions; then rousing herself as her 
daughter was leaving the room to obey her,— . 
" and fetch me your ornaments, Gertrude — all 
of them— quick, no more words;"— and she waved 


her hand impadently for her to be gone. Ger- 
trude was too well acquainted with her mother's 
imperious maimer to attempt any remonstrance, 
but she could not conceal the astonishment and 
reluctance with which she set about obeying her. 
Having collected all the money and the few jewels 
she possessed, she brought them to her mother. 

^^ Surely, mama,^ said she, ^^ it cannot be ne- 
cessary for me to give my ear-rings and bracelets 
to my nurse^s husband ? The money he is welcome 
to, but really I am churlish enough to grudge 
him my trinkets.^ 

" Keep them, then,** said Mrs St Clair, push- 
ing them from her with contempt — " keep the 
paltry baubles, since it is too great a sacrifice to 
part with them even to a parent." 

^^ O, mama, what cruel words !-^I spoke in jest 
—take them — ^take all— every thing that I have;'' 
and she drew the rings off her fingers, and un- 
clasped those in her ears. 

" No, no," said her mother, in the same cold 
bitter tone, " keep your precious gewgaws— you 
surely would not give your pearl necklace to save 
me from ruin? — that would be too much, indeed!" 

Mrs St Clair well knew how to turn to her 


Gwn^ poiposeB the quick generous temper of her 

Stung to the soul by her mother^s reproaches, 
Gertrude burst mto tears ; she besought her for- 
giveness—die implored her to take the baubles, 
till at loigth she prevailed, and what Gertrude 
would, in other circumstances, have considered a 
sacrifice, she now looked upon as a privilege ;*h9o 
differentlydo things appear, according to the state 
of our minds. 

<< To show that I do not exact more from you 
than I do from myself,^ said Mrs St Clair, going 
toher jewelrcase, ^^ I too must part with all I poB* 
sess ;^ and she took out all her own ornaments, 
and b^an putting them up along with those of 
her daughter. Gertrude assisted with a good 
grace, for she was still in a state of excitement. 
She saw all her elegant and fashionable hyauterie 
—all the cherished tokens of remembrance — all 
the little gifts she had received from far distant 
friends and companions, one by one, folded up, 
and she still felt only joy in the thought that she 
had parted with them for her mother; but she 
could not suppress a sigh when she came to an 
old-fashioned hair-brooch, in the form of a hearl, 

VOL. I. p 


set round with garnets — ^^ That was the gift of 
my dear nurse,'" said she timidly, ^^ and she made 
me promise that I neve r ^ 

** Would part with it,^ subjoined Mrs St Clair. 
" Well, keep your promise and your locket, Ger- 
trude, it is of little valu&T— it can make no difierr 
ence — surely he would not grudge you t}ia,U^ 

** He !^^ repeated Gertrude indignantly- — "it is 
not for him, it is for you — ^but why?*"— -she stop- 
ped, and looked inquiringly in her mother'^s face. 

^^ Gertrude, it is natural that your curiosity 
should be excited by what you have seen and 
heard, and the time may come — ^perhaps too soon, 
when it will be amply gratified — ^but when it is, 
I tell you that it will — ^it must be at the expence 
of my life. — Now speak — ask what you will, 
and I will answer you, but it mttst be on these 

" Oh ! mama, what a wretch you must think 
me,'*' said Gertrude, again giving way to her 
tears—" headstrong — perverse — disobedient— 
you may have found me, but surely I do not de- 
serve such killing words. Would that I could 
share in your distresses, whatever they are, if by 
sharing I could lessen them.'' 


Mrs St Clair shook her head, and sighed deep- 
ly. " I believe you, Gertrude— I know you are 
superior to the meanness of mere curioflity, and 
I think I may rely on your affection — ^may I 

Her daiightar answered by throwing herself 
into her mother^s arms, and Mrs St Clair pressed 
her to her bosom with emotions of tenderness and 
aSecdoiif such as she had never before displayed; 
When she regained her composure, she said,—- 

'^ Now, my love, we understand each other; 
you are aware that my reserve proceeds fiom no 
distrust of you. I feel that your forbearance is 
llie result of your affection for me — thenceforth all 
that you have to do is to prove your sincmty by 
your silence. You have only to promise that you 
win never disclose what you have witnessed, or 
what you may yet witness, in my conduct that may 
seem strange and mysterious, and that you will 
never reveal what I have niow told you about that 
man**-neither his name, nor his connection widi 
us, must you ever breathe, as you value my life.'*^ 

Gertrude promi8ed-HK>lemnly promised, and 
her mother again tenderly embraced her, declmr- 
ing herself satisfied. 


• ^^ You know not what a load it takes firom Iny 
mind to find you thus pradent, tractable, and con^ 
fiding-^widi feeling enough to participate in mj 
Texations— ^vitfa delicacy to repress all idle curio- 
sity — ^with affection to assist me in my difficulties 
•o^May HeaYen reward you, Gertrude, for all you 
have done and will do for me 1 And now,^ con- 
tinued ahe^ as she finished the packet she had been 
makmgup, ^ I am going to give you a yet stronger 
proof of the trust I place in you. This packet 
must be deHvered to-night to the person f<Hr whom 
it is destined. I have promised to meet him at 
the temple, near the end of the lime avenue, next 
the deer-park, at eleven o^dock, and you must ac* 
company me-^the family will then be at supper — 
I shall plead a headache— -alas ! no vain pretext !^ 
and she pressed her daughter's hand to her 
^robbing temples,—- ^^ as an excuse fior retiring to 
my room — ^you will of course attend me, and we 
shall then find no difficulty in stealing out un- 
perceived. I know all you would say, Gertrude,^ 
continued she, in a quick impatient tone, as she 
read her daughter's disapprobation in the glow 
that mantled on her cheek ; ^* but there is no al- 
temative — it must be so— yet if you repent your 


promise, I am ready to release you from it, though 
my ruin should ensue — Speak, do you wish to be 

Gertrude could not speak, but she gave her 
mother her hand in token of her submission, then 
turned shudde^ng away. Her mother again ca- 
ressed her. 

" Be composed, my love — all will yet go well — 
let us dress for dinner,'' continued she, as her 
maid entered for the purpose of preparing her toi- 
lette. . Then whispering, " Try to look cheerftd, 
my love^^remember looks may betray a secret a« 
well as words : put some flowers in your hair, and 
make yourself at least look gay for my sak0'*<-4<^ 
my sweetest 1" 

Gertrude sighed, and they separated. 



Plus sonat quam valet« 

More sound than sense. 


It would have argued ill for Gertrude, if she 
could have obeyed her mother'^s injunctions, and 
looked the thing she was not. Time and suffer-, 
ing may teach us to repress our feelings ; but the 
young and untried heart can with di£Sculty learn 
to conceal them. The most ingenuous and up- 
right mind may practise self-control; but it is 
only the artful and the mean who will ever stoop 
to dissimulation. Agitated and perplexed, in vain 
she strove to appear tranquil and disengaged — 
the very attempt served only to defeat the pur- 
pose — the more she thought of her mother^s 
strange mysterious behaviour— and of what else 
could she think ? — the more bewildered she be- 
came in the maze of her own fancy ; till at length, 


despairing of regaining self-possesdon from her 
own secret communings, she hastened to seek it 
in company, and, quickly dressing herself, she de- 
scended to the drawing-room. 

It required no great share of penetration to dis- 
cover that something more than common was pass- 
ing in her mind— her varying colour — ^her cloud- 
ed broi^ — her thoughtAil yet wandering eye, so 
different from the usual open, bland expression of 
her countenance, plainly indicated the stateof her 

Lord Rossville, Mr Delmour, and Mrs St 
Clair^ were at the farther end of the room. in ear- 
nest conversation. She was giving such an ac- 
count of her visit to Mr Ramsay, and her meet- 
ing with Major Waddell, as suited her own pur- 
poses ; and she dilated so much upon the difficul- 
ties and importance of their votes, and the ma- 
nagement that would be requisite to secure them, 
that she at last succeeded (no very difficult mat- 
ter) in completely mistifying, at least, one of her 
auditors. In short, she convinced Lord Ross- 
ville, and almost persuaded his nephew, that the 
whole issue of the election depended upon her and 
her family. 


'^ I have a strange heacUtroBg set of beii^ to 
ded witb,"" said she ; ** but, I thuik^ with a little 
address and a good deal of attention, we shall 
prevail at last." 

^^ On such an occasion,'^ said his Lordship, 
^^ nether ought to be wanting, my dear Madam* 
I flatter myself we are none of us deficient in the . 
former qualification, and the latter depends entire- 
ly upon ourselves. To-morrow, Mr Delmour and 
I shall make a point of waiting upon such of 
your relatives and connections as^— Mr Delmour 
here took out his memorandum-book, and began 
to write down the names of Major Waddell, Mr 
RaiBsay, and Mr Black, in his list for die follow- 
ing day. " I wish we could secure your unde,'' 
salt he to Mrs St Clair ; — then turning to Lord 
Rossville,— " I find he is the purchaser of the 
superiorities of Deafknows, which, with Tong- 
]ands and Eilspindie, might, with ease, be split 
certainly into four ; but I think, probably, into 
five qualifications ; these on our side would make 
it quite a hollow business — Don'*t you think 

^^ Why, in all human probability, it would,^ 
replied his Lordship ;— ** at the same time, we 


must be cautious how we admit or mistake mere 
probabilities for absolute certainties— -in all such 
cases there must ever be contingencies, which it is 
impossible, or, at least, extremely difficult to fore- 
see or guard against. It is a matter of doubt with 
me, whether Mr Ramsay has yet been infeft in 
these lands of Kindyford and Caulfauld, and 
whether there is not a wadset on the lands of OgiL 
face and Haggiescape ? In all likelihood, our op* 
ponents are using every means to bring some such 
corps de reserve into the field. Also, I under- 
stand, there were two new claims preferred for en* 
rolment on the lands of Stonykirk and Kilnectles 
at the last meeting of freeholders ; and we may 
reasonably conclude, that the roll will be still far- 
ther augmented by the adverse party-— that is, if 
it is possible for them to do so.^ 

While this colloquy, and much mote of the 
same kind, was carrying on at one end of the rocnn, 
the other presented Lady Betty, spread out in 
foil dress on a sofa, with Flora by her side, and 
Colonel Delmour and Mr Lyndsay at a Uttle dis* 
tance, engaged in some debate. Gertrude, on en- 
tering, almost unconsciously seated herself at (me 
Jipf the windows, apart from every body ; but she 


was immediately joined by her cousins. Colonel 
Delmour remarked, with secret satisfaction, the 
agitation of her look and manner. He imputed 
it entirely to the declaration he had ventured to 
make, which he thought had probably given rise 
to some discussion betwixt her mother and hei*^ 
and which he had no doubt would end, as all such 
discussions between mother and daughter gene^ 
r^y do, in favour of the lover. 

But this was not precisely the time when he 
wished his pretensions to be publicly known — and 
be was rather desirous that Miss St Claires emo- 
tion should pass unobserved. 

Colonel Delmour^s manner, however, although 
guarded and respectftil, nevertheless carried with 
it that nameless something which made even the 
object of his professed idolatry feel he had gain- 
ed an ascendancy over her, and that the worship- 
ped was also the worshipper. While he leant on 
the back of her chair, Mr Lyndsay once or twice 
addressed some remark to her, but, absent and oc- 
cupied, she scarcely seemed to hear him. 

" Is it to-day that you would have me be- 
gin to sketch your portrait ?^^ said he, with a 


. << No-*— not to-day,'" replied she, in some con* 

*^ And why not ? To paint from nattire, one 
must take nature in all her various moods and 

^^ But I don^t love stormy cloudy pictures,^ 
said (Gertrude with a sigh. 

Colonel Delmour looked reproachfully at her, 
as he whispered, '*' Strange, that this day, which 
has been the brightest in my life, should s^em 
cloudy to you. — Ah, Gertrude I why do we not 
view it with the same eyes ?^ 

Gertrude blushed deeply, but remained silent. 

" What oVlock is it ?^ inquured Lady Betty. 

^^ Seven minutes to six,^ said Miss Pratt, aft 
she entered, and tripping past Lady Betty, 
joined the grbupe in the window. " Any 
thing new going on here?-^ — It^s changed dayft 
with you, Colonel, to be in the drawing-room 
before dinner— *we seldom used to see you till 
the first course was going away.'^ Survey- 
ing Gertrude from head to foot, " Whafs come 
over you to-day, my dear ? Yotfre not look* 
ing like yourself. — I think youVe got too many 
of these passion-flowers in your head.— -Mr £d« 


ward, yoa must not take your eoosin^fl pcture to- 
day, or else she must part with some of these 
passion-flowers — I really donH think they^re be- 
coming—just let me* take out that <» c ^ and 
she was preparing to lay her hands upon it, when 
her^s were seised by Colonel Delmour. 

<* Bless me. Colonel, don^t be so violent ; Fm 
sure I wasn^t going to take off Miss St Claires 
head ;^-they may well be called passion-flowers, 
fer they really seem to have put you in a fine 
passion— and youVe crumpled all my ru£P, and 
squeezed one of my fingers to the bone/^ 

Colbnel Delmour, colouring a little at the trans- 
port of indignation he had given way to, affected 
to laugh it off, and, releasing Miss Pratt^s hands 
from his grasp, said in a loud whisper, — 

^^ I beg pardon if, in the ardour of my passion, 
I did press your hands too«— too' tenderly — ^ini- 
pute the blame ■ ^ 

^' I don^t know what you mean, C<donel Del- 
mour,^ cried Miss Pnitt aloud, as she stroked down 
her ruff and caressed her injured finger, with every 
appearance of ill humour ; *^ but I know yoiiVe 
left your marks upon me in a pretty manner. 
I didn'^t know Miss St Cliur'^s head had been your 


j^dperty, or, I assure you, I wotddnH hare offer- 
ed to touch it— but I know if she^s wise, she^U 
take care how she trusts you with her hand, after 
seeing how youVe used mine,^ and she held up* 
red angry-looking finger, and shook her ru£P — 
" and only look at my ruff!" 

•^ What's the matter with your ruff?*' asked 
Lady Betty ; ** it looks very neat, I think." 

'^ Neat ! it was more than neat, hut Colonel 
Delmour has spoil'd the seat of it, and Fll have to 
get it all goffered o^er again." 

" By-the-bye, Miss Pratt," said Colonel Del- 
mour, ^^ since you denounce me as the destroyer 
of your ruff-^it is a deed for which I think I meiit 
the thanks of all pious, well-disposed persons in 
general, and of the kirk-session in particular. I 
read a history of ruffs t'other day, which harrow- 
ed up my soul, and made my young blood to 
freeze. I assure you, ever since I have been ini- 
tiated into the shocking mysteries of ruff^makin^ 
Hamlet's horror at sight of his father's ghost has 
been nothing compared to mine, when I behold 
a stiff well-appointed ruff, so completely is it m^ 
sociated, in my mind's eye, with hoofs and horns, 
blackness and brimstone;" — ^then going to the li* 


brary, he presently returned with an ancient fo- 
lio in his hand, and, turning over the leaves, he 
read as follows, with an air of ludicrous horror 
and dismay : ^' The Anatomic of Abuses, con« 
taining a Discoverie or brief Summarie of such 
Notable Vices and Imperfections as now raigne 
in many Counteries of the World, &c. &c. &c. 
By Phillip Stubbes, 1683. 

*< — They have greate and monsterous 

ru£Pes, made either of cambricke, lawne, or els of 
some other of the finest doth that can be got fox 
monie, whereof some be a quarter of a yarde deepe, 
yea, some more, very fewe lesse : So that they 
stande a Aille quarter of a yarde (and more) from 
their neckes, hanging over their shoulder pointes 
insteade of a vaile. But wot ye what ? the deivill, 
as he, in the fullnesse of his malice, first invented 
these greate ruffes, so hath he now found out also 
two greate pillars to beare up and maintaine 
this his kingdome of pride withal. The one 
arche or pillar, where bye^his kingdom of greate 
ruffes is undar propped, is a certain kinde of U- 
quide matter which they call starch, wherein 
the deivill hath willed them to washe and to drie 
their ruffes well, which being drie, will then stand 


stiffe and inflexible aboute their necke^. The 
other pillar is a certaine device made of wiers 
crested for the purpose, whipped either over with, 
golde thred, silver, .or silke, and this he calleth 
a.imderpropper. Beyond all this, they e. have a 
fiurther fetche, nothynge inferior to the reste, as. 
namely, three or fowr decrees of minor ruffes 
placed in gradatimf one beneathe another, and aU 
under the Mayster Deivill Ruffe. Sometimes 
they are ^" 

" Such nonsense !** exclaimed Miss Pratt. " I 
really never heard, the like of it. I wonder how 
you have patience to listen to it, Lady Betty.. I. 
really think Miss St Clair might show more s<^Qse 
than to laugh at such ridiculous stuff* There^s 
the. gong, that^s better worth attending to ;^ and 
away walked Miss Pratt and her ruff. 

The politicians were also roused at the sound ; 
and as they broke up, Mrs St Clair said to Lord 
Rossville, — 

^^ Rest assured, my Lord, nothing shall, be 
wanting on my part to gain the suffrages of my 
family ; and I have little doubt of accomplishing 
it, since your Lordship has thus kindly and con- 
siderately given me a carte blanchey as it were, 


fcr my actioiis upon the occanon. I fisel mort 
deeply the Tatoe of die oonfidenoe you hmve thus 
leposed in me. 

Lord Boflgville had done no sadi ddng, asgive 
or dream of gmng Mis St Chdr a carte biant^ke 
finr her actions ; — hot he lored to hear hhnadf 
eommended, whether for what he had done^ or 
for what he had not done ; and he Aerefoce aL 
lowed it to pass, in the belief that he was indeed 
all that was kmd, wise, and considerate. Ger- 
tnid^ as a matter of course, was again placed 
between Lord RossYille and Mr Delmoor, and 
condemned, during a tedious dinner, to bear the 
same political jargon carried on. Mr Dehnour 
now and then changed the conversation, indeed, 
out of compliment to her, andtalkedof die views, 
the weather, the races, and such subjects as he 
seemed to think suited to a female capadty ; but 
it was evidently an effort to descend to such 
things, and Gertrude felt only provdied that he 
should even attempt to be agreeable. 

When they rose from table, her mother made 
a sign for her to follow her to her own room. 



— — -^ ; — —'— Never in my breast 

Did ignorance so struggle with desire 
Of knowledge, — — -_—.—. — — — ; • ^ > 

As in that moment ; nor — dar'd I 
. To question, nor myself could aught discern. 

Car\^S Dante. 

*^ You are a poor dissembler, Gertmde,"* said 
MtB St Clair, after having shat the door of faei^ 
pbamber, and careftdly examined each lurking re- 
cess — *^ your looks have ahready betrayed to the 
family that something is nrrong-^^even stupid 
X^ady Betty' asked me atdinner whether you were 
well enough. It iis, therefore, obvious you are 
suffering either from mental disquiet or bodily in:- 
disposition, and it must be your part to play the 
invalid this evemng/' Then seeing her daughter 
about to exjpress her dislike of the deception, ^f It 
is easily done — ^you have only tQ remsin here, and 
leave it to me to account for your absencQ in the 

VOL. 1. Q 


drawing-room ;'*^ — ^then, with a profound sigb, 
^^ the headache and the heartache are both rnine^ 
God knows ! but if you will only affect to bear 
the one for me, you will assuredly alleviate the 

Gertrude felt that she was become a mere tool 
in her mother's hands, and that it was in vain to 
contend. She therefore yielded a passive assent 
to remaming a prisoner for the rest of the even- 

Various were the conjectures, and numberless 
the remedies, called forth by Mrs St Clair's com- 
munication of her dai^hter's indisposition. The 
lieat of the day-^he drive— the roads — ^the dust 
— ^the dinner— Uncle Adam and his airless room^ 
§31 these, and many more, were each assigned as 
A sufficient cause for headache, and eau de Cou« 
logne, aromatic vinegar, and all the thousand 
perfumed spedfics, down to Lady Betty's home- 
made double-distilled lavender wat^, were re- 
commended and accepted. As for Lotd Ross^ 
ville, he made it quite a matter of life aosd deatiu 
*^A fever commonly began with a headache--^ 
Was t|wre any disposition to shivering on the part 
^ the patient P^^^any thirst-^t-any fever^-Hifty bfle 


— how were the eye»*-how was the tongue — 
bow wa& the pulae ?-^A little blood taken in time 
was perhaps the most effectual antidote-— He 
possessed some knowledge of medicine himself-^ 
and, hi short, Mrs St Clair only prevented hint 
from going to prescribe for his niece in person, hf 
assuring bim that she felt a great disposition to 
sleep, and had requested that she might not be 
dfiisturbed. It was therefore finally settled, that 
if Miss St Clair was no better by. to-morrow 
morning, she was then to be given up to his 
Lordship'^s direction. 

Colonel Delmour suspected there was some de- 
ception in the case, and was at no loss, as he 
thought, to fathom the mystery. He believed 
their mutual attachment had been discovered by 
Mrs St Clair, and that Gertrude was suffering 
persecution on his account ; but he felt little ap- 
prehension as to the result ; he knew enough of 
human nature to be aware, that, to a romantic 
ardent nature such as hers, a little oppositioti 
would have rather a good effect, and that there is 
sometimes no surer way of creating an interest in 
one party than by exciting a prejudice in an- 


Meanwhile, the object of all this soficitode'sat 
at her window, '^ watching the coming' on of grate- 
Ail evening mild.''^ It was at that lovely season 
when day and night are so imperceptibly blended 
into each other, that night seems only a softer, 
sweeter day. There were none of those magnifi- 
cent masses of clouds which, in thi^ climate, ge^ 
nerally form the pomp and circumstance of a fine 
sunset. The sky was cloudless and serene^ and 
a soft, silvery moon shone in one quarter of the 
heavens, while the mellow golden lustre of the 
sun gradually melted away in the other. 

'' When the last sunshine, with expiring ray. 
In Summer twih'ght weeps the close of day. 
Who hath not felt the softness of that hour 
Steal o'er his heart like dew-drops on the flower?" 

Then came the deeper blue of the silent night, 
with her ^^ solemn bird and glittering stars*^ 

But Gertrude was withdrawn from the con-* 
templation of these consecrated things by the en- 
trance of her mother. She threw herself on & 
dbair and sighed heavily — ^then starting up— 

^^ Prepare yourself, Gertrude; in a few minutes 
we must set forth ; — ^fetch your green travelling 

aloakf it mil completely cover your dress, aind 
conceal your figure, should we unfortunately 
meet any one, which Heaven forbid r 

Gertrude brought her cloak, and did as she 
was directed, while har mother wrapt herself in a 
similar disguise, and both awaited in trembling ex- 
^ctaden the signal for sallying forth. At length 

the gong sounded— -voices were heard as the fa* 
mily passed through the hall to the supper-room 
«— the doors were «hut, and all was silent. 

^^ Now is the time,^^ said Mrs St Clair, in a 
voice almost inarticulate from agitation. ^^ Yet 
stay— -should it by any unforeseen mischance ever 
!reach Lord Rossville^s ears, that we were seen 
leaving the house together at such an hour^— no, 
that will never do-^Gertrude, you must go first, 
and I will follow.'' 

" O no, no i'' cried her daughter, turning pale 
with terror ; " why should that be — surely that 
can make no difierence ?'*^ 

^^ No difierence in reality, but much in appear- 
ance,'' said Mrs St Clair, impatiently. " Your 
stealing out to take a ramble by moonlight, how* 
ever silly, would not sound very improbable, and 
my following you would be perfectly natural ; but 


both going out together 19 quite uiutccauutable» 
and must not be-^go^-make haste.^ 

** Oh mama ! — do not— I beseech you, do not 
ask me to go alone. I cannot—indeed, I can- 
not ;^ and she sank upon a chair. 

^^ Ridiculous !^ exclaimed her mother, in a 
tone of suppressed anger ; ^< of what are you 

** I know not-^I cannot tell. I am geing I 
know not where^— to meet— -I know not whom*^ 
and at midnight. No, I cannot — I will not go;'' 
and she threw back her doak, and shook off her 
hat> with gestures of impatience and indignation. 

" Obstinate — ^unfeeling — ^ungrateftil wretch f 
excUiimed Mrs St Clair, giving way to her paa- 
sion; " is it for you that I suffer— that I— -why do 
I not give you up to your fate at once^^why^Mr 
but I wiU be obeyed. I command you on your 
peril to obey me.'' 

Gertrude threw herself on the floor at heir mor 
ther's feet. ^^ Kill me— trample on me," cried 
she, in an accent of deqpair; ^^ but my soul re- 
volts from these mysteries. Oh ! my mother !" 
continued she in broken accents, '^ is it you who 
pommand me thus to steal from my uncle's house 

CHAPTSE xxir. 247 

«t midrnght-^diaguifled and 9hae-^to meet * 
Iow4x>m-*iie€dy desperate nan?^ 

Mrs St Clair remained silent for a few mo^ 
nents, as if struggling with her feelings; she thai 
spoke in a yoice of unnatural calmnes^^ 

^^ Be it so.-«*My entreaties^-any prayers-^my 
commands are in vain*— the die is cast l^ your 
hand, and my doom is fixed. I t<dd you that my 
life depended upon your umresenred obedience-** 
and—— the forfeit shall be paid."* 

Grertrude looked on her mother^s face— -every 
feature was convulsed with powerful and fearful 
emotion— then every idea vanished but that of 
her moAer dying— dead— and she the cause. All 
personal fear— all lofty feeling fled: the right 
chord was touched, and her whole frame vibrated 
with emotion. She clung to her mother^s knees 
—she sued for pardon— she vowed the most im* 
plicit obedience— ^he most devoted submission to 
her will— Hshe called Heaven to witness that 
henceforth she would do all that was required of 
heiUiHshe i»*ayed that she might be tried onee, 
only once more. She spoke with all the ardour 
and sincerity of powerful emotion, but it is not 
with a throbbing heart and a burning brow the 


mastery is obtamed— -if vows made in pain are 
void, those formed under the influence of excited 
feeling are no less vain and fleeting. Mrs St 
Claires features gradually relaxed, and, in a more 
natural voice, she said — 

" I forgiyeyou, .Gertrude — I finrgiveyour doubts, 
your fears, however iigurious to me.-^-Go, then — 
but ere you go, reflect on what you have undertak- 
en— Hremember you have vowed tmquaUfied obe-. 
dience-— there is now no middle oourse^-^-you are. 
either my preserver, or my destroyer**— she pour- 
ed out a glass c^ water, and held it to her dau^r- 
ter'^s trembling lips.-^" Now, listen to my instruc- 
tions : — Glide quickly and softly along till you 
reach the south turret stair — ^be cautious in de- 
scending it, and making your way along the old 
passage to the west door, which is seldom locked 
—-when there, you have only to cross the lawn 
—keep by the river side, and wait me at theivy^ 
bridge^— fear nothing — I will follow you immedi- 

Gertrude again muffled herself in her cloak,andy 
with a beating heart, went on her way as fiist aa 
terror and agitation would permit* She groped 
her way down the little turnpike-stair, and along 


a dark passage, in an old part of the house, to a 
door which opened upon the lawn. But there all 
things stood disclosed in the light of a fiill moon, 
and calm, cloudless sky, and her heart ahnost 
failed her as she marked her own dark shapeless 
shadow stealing along on the silvery path. She 
soon gained the bank of the river, and there, in 
the deep shade of the rocks and trees, she felt se- 
cure, at least firom discovery, if not from danger.' 
A few steps more and she reached the bridge,, 
where she if as to await her mother. 

At another time she would have been charmed 
with the romantic loveliness and grandeur of thc^ 
scene. — Rocks, trees, and waterfall, all gleamed 
in the pale pellucid light — ^not a leaf was stirring,^ 
a»d the solemn stillness was only broken by the 
rushing of the river, and the whooping of the 
owls. But to enjoy the tranquillity of nature, 
requires that there should be some sympathy be^ 
tween the mind and the scene ; and GertrudeV 
feelings were but little in unison with the calm, 
the holy majesty of moon-light. Scarcely daring^ 
to breathe, every instant seemed an age, till she 
beheld her mother advance with a quick but agi^ 


*^ We are late^^ md she in a low tone ; ^^ let 
us make haste ;^ and taking her daughter's snn, 
they proceeded together in silence fer a cmuai- 
derable distance till they came irithin sight of a 
temple situated on the summit of the bank. 

^^ It was there I appointed to meet him,^ 
said Mrs St Clair ; and as she spoke, the figjure 
of a man was seen approaching towards them.*— 
^^ Wait here, Gertrude,^ cried she, waving her 
daughter back, as she would have dnr^ to her. 
<^ I shall be within sight and call of you. Do 
not stir from hence, and remember your pro- 

And disengaging herself from her, she hastily 
advanced to meet the strange. , It was not in 
human nature not to have felt the most intense 
euriofidty at this moment ; and Gertrude cer- 
tainly eiperienced it in no common degree, 
when she beheld her mother'^s meeting with thw 
mysterious man. Although beyond the reach of 
hearing what passed, their gestures told a tale of 
no common import. After remaining a few mi- 
nutes in deep and earnest conversation, she saw 
Mrs St Clair offer him a packet, which she 
guessed was the one containing the money and 


jewek. She then saw the person reject it, as if 
with scorn, and even turn away from it, as Mrs 
St Clair seemed to press it upon him. This 
dumb show lasted some minutes, till at length 
he snatched it from the hand she held out to 
him, and threw it upon the ground, and made 
soine steps towards the place where Gertrude 
stood. Mrs St Clair caught him by the arm ; 
she seemed to be arguing, imploring, suppli- 
cating. Now she clasped her hands, as if in an 
agony ; then she raised them, as if in solemn 
appeal to Heaven, and Gertrude caught the 
sound of her voice, in tones of the deepest an* 
guish. At length she seemed to prevail. Having 
herself lifted up the packet he had so contemp- 
tuously cast away, she again offered it to him, 
and it was accepted. They now advanced to., 
geiher till within a few paces of Gertrude, when 
Mrs St Clair quitted her companion and ap.- 
proached her daughter. The shade of the trees 
covered her face, but her voice was expressive of 
the utmost agitation. 

^^ Gertrude, my love,^ said she in a low tone, 
<^ Lewiston wishes to see you, to talk with you, 
—ras the husband of your nurse, and a sort of 


confidential person in the fiunily, he thinks he 
has a right to address you in his own way. I dare 
not refiise> Gertrude*-4ie toill converse with you 

Mrs St Clair placed her hand on her daughter's 
lips, as she saw an indignant refiisal ready to burst 

^^ Oh, Gertrude ! dearest Gertrude ! as you va- 
lue my life, as you value your own happiness, do 
not xefiise-:— do not provoke him. — I am in his 
power-— one hasty word, one contemptuous look, 
may undo me. Oh, Gertrude I for the love you 
bear to me — ^for the love you bore your nurse— » 
for the love of Heaven — ^be calm and patient 
Speak— tell me I may trust you ?" 

And she led her a few steps towards the 
stranger. Gertrude started with terror, as the 
moon-beams now fell on her mother's face, and 
showed it wild, and even ghastly, from excessive 

" Compose yourself, mama," s&id she; " I will 
do — I will be all you desire." 

There was no time for more, for the stranger, as 
if impatient of delay, had now joined them — he 
held out his hand to Gertrude with an air of fami- 

CHAPTER xxir. 256 

liarity, which at oiice roused her indignation, and 
had almost thrown her ofF her guard, when a look 
from her mother subdued her. With a blush of 
wounded pride, she suffered him to take it, and 
Mrs St Clair walked apart. He surveyed her for 
some minutes without speaking, while her cheek 
burned, and her heart swelled at the indignity to 
which she was thus subjected. At length, he said 

*^ Do you remember your nurse ?^ 

" Perfectly.^ 

** How old were you when she died P'* 

** I was nine years old."^ 

" You were very fond of her, were you not .?'* 

** I loved her as my mother," answered Ger- 
trude in a voice of deep emotion. 

" That was well — you are aware that I was 
her husband, consequently, have some claim to a 
share of your affection. Do you think yoii will 
be able to bestow any of it upon me?^ 

Gertrude^s spifit was ready to burst forth at the 
insolent freedom of this address, but she repress- 
ed it, and answered coldly — » 

^* Aa the husband of rhynurse I am willing to 


amist you as far as I am able, but I have little in 
my power at present.^ 

^* True — ^but the time will come wfaea you will 
have much.^ 

** When I have,^ answered Gertrude, wisfaii^ 
to end the conference, ^^ the claims of my nurse^s 
husband shall not be forg(Jtten ;^ and she was 
moving awqr. 

^^ Stop,^ cried he, ** not so fast*— the claims of 
your nurse^s husband are not so easily settled as 
you seem to suppose. I wish to put a few more 
questions to you, young lady, before we part :-^ 
How am I to be assured that you will ever have 
it in your power to assist me in the world ?^ 

*• I can give you no assurance,^ said Gertrude ; 
" all that I can say is — if ever it is in my power 
to befriend you, for the sake of your wife, I shaQ 
be ready to do it."" 

** Only for the sake of my wife !^ repeated he 
with a smUe.— " We shall see how that is when 
the time comes, whether I shall not have some- 
thing to say with you for my own sake.^ 

In silent displeasure Gertrude turned proudly 
away, when he caught her cloak to detain her* 



" Wcll^ we shall settle that afterwardg ; but if 
you play your cards well, you will one day have 
something in your power, or the deuce is in if. 
The worst of it is^ that day may be a while of 
comingy and your friends may starve in the mean- 
time ; but your uncle is a jnretty okl boy, and you 
are sure of succeeding.'^ 

Gertrude was choking with indignation, but 
she remembered her promise, and remained si* 

<^ What are your plans for the future ?^ de- 
manded he abruptly. 

^^ I am not in the habit of communicating my 
{dans to strangers,^ answered she haughtily. 

^^ But I have a right to know your plans,^ 
said he fiercely; ^^ I insist upon an answer to my 
question. — ^What are your plans for the fiiture ?^ 

Gertrude was terrified — " I am ignorant of 
your meaning,^ said she faintly. 

" I mean, in the event of your uncle^s death, 
what would you do ? — ^would you marry or remain 
single ?— and has your mother attempted to influ- 
ence you in favour of any body .'^—answer me that 
—does she wish you to marry or not ? — say .^ 

^^ It is impossible for me to answer — T do not 


know — I cannot tell/* answered Gertrude, almost 
overcome with the contending emotions of terror 
and indignation. 

'* Are you sure of that ? — ^is there no Colonel 
Delmour in the case, ready to swindle the heiress 
out of her estates ? — ^but fliat won't do — ^you must 
beware how you entangle yourself there^— you 
must beware how you commit yourself— or, by 
Jupiter ! ■ Come, I must know how the land 
lies — I must know how you stand affected to 
those fortune-hunters, who are looking after you ;^ 
and he would have taken her hand with an air of 
familiarity, which now completely threw her off 
her guard. Uttering a piercing cry, which echoed 
through the woods, she flew wildly past him, 
^nd cast herself into her mother's arms. 




Bince in the toils of fate 

Thou art ^Dclo8*d, submit, if thou canst brook • 


When Gertrude awoke the following morning 
from a feverish and disturbed sleep, her mind, 
like the broken fragments of a mirror, presented 
only disjointed and distorted images, which 
she vainly endeavoured to arrange and combine 
into one connected whole. iHideous dreams were 
mingled with no less hideous realities, and confii- 
gion only became worse confounded in the attempt 
to separate them. At length she opened her 
eyes, and beheld her mother sitting by her. 

** Oh ! mama,^ cried she, '* speak to me— tell 
me what has happened-— last night— ^was it— Oh f 
was it all a dream ?^ 

" Compose yourself^ Gertrude,'' answered Mrs 

VOL. T. R 



St Clair ; ^^ whatever it was it is now past — think 
of it no more.*^ 

^^ Impossible— I can think of nothing else ! — 
I must know — I implore you to tell me at least 
this much — ^last night — Mr Lyndsay — Oh ! tell 
me, did he not rescue me from the grasp ^ 

" Gertrude,* interrupted her mother in great 
agitation, ^^of what ujse is it to talk or think 
of what is past P— it is distressing to yourself— to 

" It was then even so !— I now remember it 
all—their high word^H— their threateninglanguage 
—and that man ■ J*^ 

^^ Hush, Gertrude, hush i'' again inteiposed 
her mother ; *^ you know not what you say.'' 

^^ Yes— I know it all — he dared to assart that 
he had a right over me— A«, the husband of my 
uurse, to dare to claim a right over me l'^ and her 
voiee was almost choked, at the thoughts of hav- 
ing be^ subjected to such an indignity. 

^^ But, naama, surely this was— this must have 
been a dream — I know it was,'' and she gasped as 
she spoke. *^ When he appealed to you — ^you — 
Oh ! — you said it was so^I know I must have 
dreamt /Aa/," and she looked wildly and eagerly 

CHA1*TEB xziir. 259 

in her madior's face ; but Mf»-St Ckir lemamod 

^^ Oh! you clid nat-^yoa oovid not speak of 
engageinent8*«>«of entanglements— >4if-^I know not 
what — ^yet strange and dreadAil words of that imr 
port still ring in my ears— 4ell me— «K«ly tell me 
it is all a dream.^ 

^^ Gertrude, tfaas is agon^ing to yonrself-Mo 
mei<-»repte8s-^&i mercy repress those feelings.*" 

** I will-**I will,'' cried her danghter, in in- 
creasing agitation ; ^^ only say you did not so 
traduce me, as to sanction the horriUe belief, that 
I could be so base-HH> vile-^h I how tt degrades 
me even to utter it — as to have plighted myself 
to a roeni&L'" 

" Compose yourself, Gertrude ; I cannot talk 
to you while you are in this state.^ 

^ WcU, I wiB — I am^ composed,'' makii^ a 
viol^ii effort to appear cidm, while her firaAie 
tremUed with Ae Tiolence of her esiotio«e*-' 
^^ Ite Wy only say, that you, my moth^, did not so 
caltmsniate m o ' ■ b ut tio, you cannot,'' cried she, 
again giying way to the impetuosity of her feel- 
ings— ^*^ It is no dream-— I heard it all-— I heard 
you— you, my mother, assert that man had a 


clflim to me, and — I believe I was mad at the 
moment — Did I not throw myself at my cousin's 
feet, and implore him to save me— did I not cling 
to him in agony, while that man would have torn 
me from him?'' 

" Gertrude, I would have spared you the re- 
petition of your folly — ^your madness — I would 
have spared you the painful recollection of your 
broken promise, your injurious distrust of me — 
I warned you of the consequences of disregarding 
my injimctions— my entreaties— -my commands— 
but all fvere disregarded — ^what right have you, 
then, to upbraid me for having told you the 
truth ?" 

*^ No, you did not tell me the truth — you did 
not tell me you were leading me to insult*-to de- 

" Say not that I led you — but for your own 
pride and folly all would have been well-^had 
you remembered my warning, and ;aot provoked 
the person it was your interest as weU as mine 
to have conciliated— nothing of all this would 
have happened — but your absurd outcry reached 
Mr Lyndsay, who unfortunately had been en- 
ticed by the beauty of the night to take 4 moon- 


Ught ramble^ and who hastened to the spot, un-- 
happily at the same moment when the other ad- 
vanced— bnt the worst is over. Mr Lyndsay is 
a noble minded honourable man, and we have no- 
thing to fear from hini — ^he has promised to be for 
ever silent on the subject." 

" But what — Oh ! what must he think of me!'* 
exclaimed Gertrude, in an accent of the deepest 

^^ Be assured he thinks nothing injurious of 

^^ Yet that man dared to assert that my father 
had given him a right to me-— Ae, the husband of 
my nurse ! — ^no, I will not—I cannot for an in* 
stant live under such a sense of degradation—*-! 
must seek Mr Lyndsay'— I must tell him it is 
false r And she attempted to rise, but sank 
back on her pillow overwhelmed with the force of 
her emotions. 

" For Heaven's sake, Gertrude, do not give 
way to these transports I'' cried her mother. 
" Every thing is now settled — the object of 
your alarm is already many miles distant— ^ne- 
ver more, I trust, to return— why then dwell 
upon what is past, when it can be productive of 


no good P Come, my love, for my Mke, try to 
forget it aU.*" 

« Forget it T repeated Gertrude ; « forget tluti 
I have been exposed to insult-— to degradatioD, 
and by my mother t— -that I never can forget !^ 

" No, do not forget it," cried Mrs St Clair, 
bursting into tears ; ^* treasure it in your hearths 
core — let all my love, and care, and tenderness, be 
forgotten— let your duty — your obedience— -your 
promises, be forgotten*— but do not forget this one 
unfortunate actiour— record it — ^proclaim it, and 
then let me end a miseraUe existence,*— Shall I 
summon Lord Bossriile and the family," said she, 
with affected calmi^ss, putting her hand to the 
bell, ** to hear you denounce your mother ?" 

Time had been when this ai^>eal would have 
produced its intended oSed upon Gertrude ; bat 
her feelings had been already excited to their ut- 
most, and she felt too wretched herself to have 
much sympathy to bestow on the author of her 
wretchedness; she therefiire remained silent. Mrs 
St Clair repeated the question. 

" I have not deserved this,"' replied Gertmde 
coldly ; " but T am still willing to obey you— 
What would you have me do .?" 


Mrs St Clair embraced her^ and would have 
coaxed and soothed her^— but she shnmk from 
these demonstrations of affection^ and again cold- 
ly asked what remained for her to do. 

" I would have you appear^ if possible, at 
breakfast, my love ; if you do not, Lord Rossville 
will insist upon sending for medical advice, and 
will make a talk and a bustle about you, which 
may excite speculation and surmise, and any thing 
of that sort bad better be avoided at present ; 
yo^ will, therefore, oblige tiie, my dearest, if you 
will endeavour to look afid be as much yourself 
as posfifible ; and now, I shall leave you to make 
yout toilette, while I change my dress, for I have 
not been in bed all night. I have watched l^ you, 
Gertrude, and that not for the first time.'' 

Gertrude was touched by this proof of her 
mother's solicitude, and all the recollected proofs 
pf her maternal aiitieties for her in her chilcl- 
ish days irushpd to her heart, and with tfie r^ 
turxong tide Irirought back something of ten- 
d&c^Vi kindlier feeliiigs. Yielding, as she always 
did, to thie impulse of the momait, she i^eceived 
her mother^s embrace, and the scene ended in a 



There is no resource where there is no understanding. 

8t ThErese. 

Mbs St Clair and her daughter descended 
together to the breakfast-room, But at the thoughts, 
of meeting her cousin after what had so recently 
occurred, Gertrude's agitation ahnost overcame 
her, and she seated herself at the table without 
daring to lift her eyes. Many were the inqidries 
with which she was of course assailed, but Miss 
Pratf s observations, as usual, predominated. 

" I'm afraid, my dear, there's more than a com- 
mon headache the matter with you ; you put me 
very much in mind of Anthony Why te when he 
was taking the influenza ; he had just such a lit- 
tle pink spot on the top of one cheek, and all the 
rest of his face as white as the table-cloth ; and 
your eyes, too, seem very heavy, just like his— 
he never looked up for two days." The little pink 


spot had gradually increased with Miss Pratt's re- 
marks ; but making an effort to look Up, Miss St 
Clair raised her eyes, and encountered not Mr 
Lyndsay's dreaded gaze, but that of Colonel Del^ 
mour, fixed upon her with anxious scrutiny. 
Lyndsay was not present, nor was there even a 
place reserved for him. Miss Pratt seemed to 
read what was passing in her thoughts. 

" So youVe lost one of your beaux, you see ? 
Mr Edward went off thi^ morning, it seems ; it 
must have been a sudden thought, for he said 
nothing of it yesterday ; and, by the bye, what 
became of him at supper last night ? I wonder if 
he had a headache too .^— they say there's a sym- 
pathy in bodies as well as in minds sometimes ; 
Colonel Delmomr, do you believe that ?*" 

" I have heard * there is in souls a sympathy 
with sounds," "^ replied Colonel Delmour, with an 
ironical contemptuous air; ^^ but my soul is, I 
grieve to say, so lost to all that is edifying and de- 
lighted, it can rarely boast any sjnnpathy with the 
sound of Miss Pratt's voice, by which means, un- 
happily, one half of her dulcet notes fall powerless 
on my dull spirit. May I beg to know what I am 
called upon to beUeve ?'*'' 


<^ There's an old saTiiig, Colonel, that there's 
none so deaf as them who won't hear ; and I Sus- 
pect that's your ease sometimes^" retorted Miss 
Pratt in a very toothy manner, though affecting 
to turn the laugh against het opponent. 

The entrance of the post-bag here attracted 
Miss Pratt's attention. It was Lord Rossville's 
enviable prerogative to open it himself, and ta 
dole out the letters in the most cautious and deli- 
berate manner to their respective destinations — a 
measure which very ill accorded with the mercu- 
rial powers of Miss Pratt, who, in spite of his 
Lordship's precautions in holding the mouth of 
the bag as close as he possiUy could, always con* 
trived to dart her eyes down to the very bottom 
of it, and to anticipate its contents long ere the 
moment of delivery arrived. Like all weak im- 
portant people. Lord RossviQe loved power in 
any form or substance in which it presented it- 
self, even in that of a leather bag, which he gra^ 
ed with the air of a Jupiter holding his thunder- 
bolt, and lingered over it as though it had been 
another Pandora's box. Although his Lordship, 
Ibr upwards of forty years, had been in the daily, 
nay hourly, practice of declaring that ie would 

CHAPTER xxir. 867 

not be hurried— tbat he would take his own dme^ 
&c. &c., nevertheless, in the very teeth of this 
assurance. Miss Fratt did still persist in her at- 
tempts to accelerate the Earl's movements, which, 
of course, had invariably the effect of protracting 
them. On the present occasion, it seemed doubt- 
fai whether the letters were ever to see the light, 
as^ upon Miss Pratt remarking, that it Would be 
much better if there was no bag at all, for then 
people would get their letters at once, without 
being kept on the tenter-hooks this way, his 
Lordship dosed its mouth, and, opening his own, 
commenced a y^ elaborate harangue on the im- 
propriety, irregularity, and inconvenience of such 
a mode of fMroceedii^. Meanwhile, Gertrude 
gradually regained her composure, and was even 
able to receive Colonel Delmour^s assiduities with 
something like pleasure. At length, Miss Pf»tt 
having knocked under, for, as she observed, 'ia 
an underhand way, there was no disputing with 
a tDiam who held the key of the post-bag, the con- 
tents were duly distributed, and she received her 
-portion, which kept her silent for a few minutes. 
Gertrude trembled as a letter was handed to 
lier 'y but her alarm subsided when she saw it was 


directed in a feeble affected* looking' female hand, 
and sealed with a fat bouncing heart, skewered 
with an arrow, motto, " La peine eat dovee!" 
The contents corresponded with these exterior 
symbols, and were as follows : 

** Bellevue^ Jtdy — — 
" Ma cbbrb Cqusxnb, 
" Fbom what passed in your presence, you will, 
I suspect, not be very nvuch surprised to hear that 
a certain person, who shall be nameless, has car- 
ried his point, and that I have at length been 
prevailed upon to name Thursday newt as the 
day when I am to enter upon a new state of 
existence ! Eh bien I my dear coz-— I hope your 
time is coming, and when it does, most fervently 
do I pray that you may prove as fortunate in 
your choice as I have done in mine. The Ma- 
jor is indeed all that I could wish — ^fer, vay 
far beyond my poor deserts ; — and I should con- 
sider myself as the most imgrateful of women, 
if I did not look upon myself as the most fortVr- 
nate of my sew ! That being the case, I cer- 
tainly feel less than I should otherwise do at tak- 
ing this most important and solemn step ; but 


the certainty that I am bestowing myself upon 
one who is in eisery respect worthy of my warm- 
est admiration^ esteem, and affection, supports 
me ; and be assured, my dear cousin, it is the 
€mly thing that can support the spirits at such a 
time. How much, alas ! are they to be pitied, 
who do not possess that certainty^ without which, 
believe me, all the advantages of hirth and fiyr- 
tnne are nothing — ^for without that, I assure 
you, the Major^s rank, fortune, connections, man- 
ners, &c* &c. &c. never would have influenced 
me. Such being the state of affairs here at pre- 
sent, I am very desirous that you, ma chere cott- 
sine, should participate in my feelings, and also 
take a lesson for what, rest assured, will one day 
be you/r own fate, I, therefore, request, as a 
particular foA^ov/r^ that you will give us the plea- 
sure of your company to pass the intervening 
days with me, and to ofEciate as bride Vmaid upon 
a certain occasion. The Major unites with me 
in this request, so it will be a double disappoint- 
ment if any thing should prevent you. Papa and 
mama also join in the wish that my nuptials 
should be graced with your presence. The Ma- 
jor offered to drive down for you any day in the 



gig — (Apropos, I must tell you he admlb^ you 
very much — but I am not jecUotis ;)^^nt I own 
at present, I think that would be making the 
thing rather public, and besides, shall I confess 
my weakness 9 — I feel particularly timid at the 
thoughts of the Major risking himself in a gig at 
present — only conceive my situation, if any thing 
should happen to him ! ! ! I trust you will be at 
no loss for an opportunity, and that I shall 
soon have the pleasure of seeing you here, and 
of making you better acquainted with my hrd and 
master to be. Adio mia eara, 

" Isabella. 

** Pray, have you heard any more of your 
beau 9 The Mafor thinks he must be a spy, 

•^I. C. B. 

^^ Excuse haste, but the Major is sitting by 
me, and says he is ready to quarrel toith you, 
for engrossing so much of my time. 

« I. C. B.'' 

In great disgust at the vulgar, afibcrted hxA- 
liarity of this performance, Gertrude handed it 
to her mother in silence, resolved in her own 
mind to return a brief denial to Miss BelTs invi- 


tatioUi^ Not so Mr6 St Clair, who thought no- 
thing could be more apropos than thiB proposal. 
She was desirous of removing ha* daughter fix)m 
the observation^ of the family, until her mind 
should have regained its usual tone, and she 
knew nothing would be so likely to effect that as 
change of scene, and necessity of exertion. It 
would require a little management, perhaps, to 
obtain Lord Rossville^s consent ; but, in the pre- 
sent state of afiairs, that would be easily obtain- 
ed ; and having settled all this, she put the let- 
ter in het reticule, with an air that said, this re- 
quires eimsideration. 

Miss Pratt now made known the ccmtents of 
her dispatch, which was a pressing invitation to 
spend a few days at old Lady M^Caw's, to meet 
Mrs Chatwell and the Miss Enowalls^-^just a 
nice little female party. It was a pleasant thing 
for old friends to meet, and talk over old stories 
now and then, &c. &c. &e. 

** So, Miss Pratt, we are going to lose you 
then, it seems ?'* said the Earl, in an (iccent of 
agreeable surprise, and a visage beaming with de- 

" Indeed, it's not very well bred, my Lord, to 


run away in this manner/' replied Misfe Pratt ; 
" but it's an old promise of mine to Lady M^Caw, 
lionest woman, and I would not like to disappoint 
her, especially as she is so good as say she'U send 
the carriage for me to-morrow morning. How. 
ever, I shall make out my visit to you yet ; and 
if I can get hold of Anthony Whyte, will bring 
him with me.'' 

Lord Rossville's countenance fell at this assu- 
rance. He had b^n anxiously waiting the ter- 
mination of Miss Pratt's visit, that he might 
give a dinner to some of the stateliest of the 
neighbouring grandees; a thing which could 
not be got up with good effect while that lady 
was his guest. Her light frothy babbles dis- 
concerted his heavy sonorous speeches ; h^ 
brisk jGuniMarity detracted from the dignity of 
his manner ; — ^it was as impossible for him to be 
the dignified noUeman, with Miss Pratt at his 
elbow, as it would have been with an ape on his 
shoulder. Howeva*, it was a great point gained 
to have got her &irly off the field, and he flatter- 
ed himself, with a little management, he might 
contrive to exclude her till it suited his time to 
receive her again. Contrary to his usual prac- 


tice, but in conformity with the vulgar proverb, 
he therefore resolved to make hay while the sun 
shone, and straightway set about issuing his cards 
immediately. In this complacent mood, Mrs St 
Clair found little difficulty in obtaining his con- 
sent to Gertrude'^s visit to Bellevue, which she 
took care to insinuate would prove highly advan- 
tageous, in a political point of view; — a bait 
which the Earl instantly caught at. He even 
declared his intention, and that of Mr Deltnour, 
to pay their respects to the worthy family at 
Bellevue the following day ; and finally, it was 
settled, that they should accompany Mrs and 
Miss St Clair there, leaving the latter to offi- 
ciate at her cousin'^s nuptials ;— an office which, 
in the present state of the political contest, was 
not deemed derogatory, even for the heiress pre- 
siunptive of Rossville. 

Colonel Delmour seemed somewhat chagrined 
at first hearing of this arrangement ; but, upon 
reflection, he began to discover that it might ra- 
ther advance his purpose, to have the object of 
his pursuit withdrawn for a while from the watch- 
fid eyes of her guardians ; and he secretly resolv- 
ed to be a daily visitor at Bellevue while she re- 

VOL. T. s 


mained. As for Gertrude, whatever repugnance 
sbe felt at first to the proposal, she soon yielded to 
her mother^s solidtatkms, for she was a straaq^ 
to that selfidiness which is obstinate in trifies. 

Miss Pratf s departure was hailed as a joyful 
rdease by the whole party, with the exceptkm, 
indeed, pf Lady Betty and Mr Delmour. The 
one was too stupid, and the other too nmdi en- 
grossed, to have any discrimination in their choiee 
of company ;— with the one words were words, 
and Miss Pratf s words were as good, if not bet- 
ter, than other people^s words ;— -with the other, 
Miss Pratt was Miss Pratt, and one Miss was 
very much like another during a contested elec- 



They who love you for political service, love you less than 
their dinner ; and they who hate you, hate you worse than the 


The whale Black family were evidently pre- 
pared for the reception of their visitors.; and as 
they were all good looking, and well dressed, the 
tout ensemble was highly prepossessing. Indeed, 
had it been otherwise, they would still have found 
favour in the eyes of Lord Rossville and his ne- 
phew, who, in each and all of the human beings 
now assembled, even to the baby, beheld simply 
a rote or the article or particle of a vote. The 
Earl, therefore, parsed and prosed away to good 
Mrs Black, who sat listening to him with the 
most perfect reverence and admiration. Had 
the speaker been their neighbour old Mr Long- 
limgs, she might perhaps have thought him ra- 


ther long-winded ; but it was still the golden age 
of innocence with Mrs Black, for it never once 
occurred to her that it was possible for an Earl 
to be as tiresome as a commoner. She, therefore, 
hung enamoured on his Lordship^s accents ; but 
when he condescended so far as to take one of the 
children on his knee, and to drink the healthy of 
the whole family in what he declared to be the 
very best Mahnsey Maderia he had ever tasted, 
the conquest of Mrs Black was completed ; and 
she secretly vowed in her heart, that she would 
never rest night or day, till, by hook or by crook, 
she had secured Mr Black^s vote for him. And 
then, as he seemed so taken with them all, there 
was no saying but he might get a company for 
Bob, and give his business to Davy. And with 
these splendid visions, Mrs Black^s comely good- 
humoured face beamed upon the Earl with an ex- 
pression he was little accustomed to on the coim- 
tenances of his auditors, 

Mr Delmour, on his part, was not idle, having 
talked very sensibly with Mr Black on 

" Russet lawns and fallows gray. 
Where the nihhling flocks do stray;" 


that is^ in plain prose, on the rearing and feed- 
ing of cattle, succession of crops, &c. &c. He next 
addressed himself to a very pretty particle of a 
vote in the person of Miss Lilly Black, who had 
made some faint and ineiRcient attempts to disco^ 
ver whether he wrote poetry — till, growing bolder 
as she advanced, she at length popped the ques- 
tion, whether he would not write something in 
her Album. Mr Delmour protested, with the 
most perfect truth, that he never had written a 
verse in his life ; but to soften the disappoint- 
ment, added, with a bow and most expressive look, 
that if ever he was to be so inspired, it must be 
on. the present occasion. Miss Lilly blushed, 
and had no doubt that Mr Delmour was over 
head and ears in love with her already ; and 
having read every novel in the circulating library 
at Bamford, Miss Lilly was ready to be fallen in 
love with at a moments warning. 
- Mrs Major Waddell to be, was the only one of 
the family then at home who did not appear. 
She said that, in her situation, it was extremely 
unpleasant to be stared at by strangers, and as 
Lord Rossville and Mr Delmour must know per- 
fectly well how she was situated, they would 


eiMily understand her reasons &r d^iong all in* 
troductions in her present situation. Miss Bell^ 
hovever, secretly flattered herself that her ab* 
sence would be too striking to be passed over in 
silence, and that Lord BossriUe would make a 
point of seeing her ; great was her xaortificaid<H^ 
therefore, when the whole party dxme o% witb 
the exception of Gertrude, who was left behind^ 
The bride*elect descend^ to the drawing-room, 
in hopes of hearing that the Major and she had 
formed the prindpal subject of conversation; but 
there she found Mrs Black trying to remember 
all that Lord RossviUe had said about the line 
of the New Canal, and Mr Black abeady an* 
tidpi^ing the arrival of a couple of pure Merinos^ 
which Mr Belmour was to procure for him froni 
his uncle the Duke of Burlington; Miss LUly 
was expressing her wonder to Miss St Clair, 
whether it was really tnie that Mr Delmour did 
not write poetry ; and the children were squab- 
bling over the remains of the cake. 

^^ I hqpe there was no particular allusion to the 

M^^ and me,'' said Miss Bell, seeing it in v«n 

to wait for any voluntary communication ; ^ in 

my situation such things are not very pleasant.** 




^^ There was no oaeuUoii made g( you what- 
ever, Bell,^ was the reply. 

" I assure you I'm very happy to hear it,^ 
said Miss Bell, in evident displeasure, to which 
ehe could only give vent l^ turning the chilcbren 
out ci the room for making a noise, which they, 
of course, redoubled outside the door, till dragged 
shrieking away by their maid. 

Miss St Clair ahready felt the discomforts of h^ 
situation — seated in a dreissed dmwing-room £ar 
the day, with Mrs Black and her daughters, 
who seemed to have renounced all occupation for 
that of being company to their guest — and " la- 
bour dire it is and weary woe,^ in such cases, 
whether to the entertainer or the entertained. 

Gertrude felt too strange — too much out of her 
own element, to give firee scope to her mind ; she 
felt she was amongst those who did not under- 
stand her, nor she them ; the tone of their minds 
was pitched in a totally diiFerent key, and their 
ideas, tastes, and habits, she was convinced, ne- 
ver could assimilate with hers. At length, Miss 
Lilly produced her Album for the amusement 
or admiration of her cousin, and turned over page 
after page, emblazoned with miserable drawings of 


dropsicalCupidfl with blueaprons, doves that might 
have passed for termagants — stout calico roses — 
heartVease that was eye-sore, and forget-me-nots 
that ought to have been washed in the waters of 
Leth^. All these had, of course, appropriate 
lines, or lines that were intended as such. Beneath 
a rose, which bore evident traces of having been 
washed with a sponge, was written in a small die- 
away hand, scarcely visible to the naked eye, 
Cowper's pretty verses, 
**A rose had been washed^ just washed in a shower," &c« 

A bunch of heartVease, which might have served 
for a sign-post, was emblematic of a sonnet to a 
violet, beginning, 

'^ Sweet modest flower that lurk'st unseen," &c 

But the forget-me-nots had called forth an origi- 
nal efiusion addressed to Miss Lilly B., as follows : 

Forget thee, sweet maid ? — ^ah I how vain the request, — 
Thy image fond memory has stamped on my heart ; 

And, while life's warm pulses beat high in my breast. 
Thy image shall ne'er Vrom that bosom depart! 

The moon she is up> and the sun he is down ; 

The wind too is hush'd, and silent's the rill ; 
The birds to their little nests long since hare flown ; 

But when will forget my sad bosom to thrill I 


Foi^t thee ! — ^ah ! who that has ever beheld 

Thy dye of sky-blue, and thy locks of pure gold. 
Thy cheek 

"Oh! you really mustn^t read that,^ cried 
Miss Lilly, putting her hand affectedly on the 
place ; " it is only some nonsense of Lieutenant 

*^ Pray, allow me to proceed," said Gertrude, 
a little amused at the wretchedness of the rhymes. 

" O, indeed ! I can't," said Miss Lilly, affect- 
ing to be ashamed. 

^^ I assure you, I am in great pain for your 
cheek," said Gertrude ; " I'm afraid it must have 
swelled in order to rhjnme to ^ beheld.' " 

*^ Oh no ! I assure you it wasn't my cheek but 
his heart that swelled," said Miss Lilly, in per- 
fect simplicity. 

" The Captain has a great genius for poetry," 
said Mrs Black. 

"Very great," said Miss Lilly, with a gentle 
sigh. " I am certain that address to the moon 
we saw in the newspaper was his writing." 

" It's very well for people to write poetry who 
can't afford to buy it," said Miss Bell, with a dis- 
dainful toss; "the Major has bought a most 


beautiful copy of Lord Bjrron^is works, bound in 
red Morocco — ^rather too fine for reading, I think; 
but he said he meant it to lie upon my sofa-table, 
80 I couldn't find fault.'' 

" To be sure. Bell, as you say, it's a bettet 
business to buy poetry than to write it," said Mrs 

** There is nothing more worth reading," said 
Miss Lilly, as her cousin continued to turn over 
the leaves of the book ; " that is only some dull 
stupid stufi^ aunt Mary copied for me; I've a 
good mind to tear it out, it is just like a ser- 
mon;" and she was preparing to execute her 
threat, when Gertrude begged leave to read the 
offending lines before they were committed to the 

When I look back^ and in myself behold 
The wandering ways that youth could not descry ; 
And mark the fearful course that youth did hold. 
And melt in mind each step youth stray'd awry ; 
My knees I bow, and from my heart I call, 

Lord ! forget these faults and follies all. 

For now I see how void youth is of skill, 

1 see also his prime time and his end ; 
I do confess my faults and all my ill. 
And sorrow sore for that I did offend ; 


And with a mind repentant of all crimes^ 
Pardon I ask for youth ten thousand times. 

Thou that hy power to life did'st raise the dead ; 
Thou that of grace restor'dst the hlind to sight ; 
Thou that for love thy life and love outbled ; 
Thou that of favour mad'st the lame go right ; 
Thou that can'st heal and help in all essays^ 
Forgive the guHt that grew in youth's vain ways. 

Lord Vaux.- 

" I like the verses,'' said Gertrade ; " and 
should be glad to have them ; something tells 
me,'' added she with a sigh, as she read them 
over again, ^^ that they may some day be applica- 
ble to myself." 

^^ God forbid, my dear !" said Mrs Black, with 
a look of horror-—^' God forbid that any of us 
should ever be brought to such straits as that, and 
I see no good in putting such dismal thoughts in- 
to young folks' heads ;^-but if you would like to 
put o£P your bonnet befcKre dinner, it's time you 
were thinking of it :" 

" For there comes the Major," cried Miss 



fTne froideur ou une indidlite qui vient de ceux qui soot au- 
dettiu de nous, nous les fait hair^ mais un salut ou iin soiuire 
noui les rdoonciUew 

La Bbuye&e. 

The following day brought Colonel Debnour, 
and Gertrude watched, with some solicitude, the 
effect her relations would produce upon him. 
But he was upon his guard, and none but a nice 
observer could have detected superciliouis con- 
tempt in the lofty ease of his manner. But there 
is an ease, which causes only constraint in the 
minds of others, and such was Colonel Delmour^s. 
He was much too elegant and high bred to have 
any thing of the familiar ease, so often a conco- 
mitant of the vulgar — ^but he had as little of that 
open simplicity of manner, which is the charac- 
teristic of a noble ingenuous mind. It was that 
sort of ease, which implies conscious superiority 


m its possessor, and consequently produces the 
opposite feeling in those less gifted mortals with 
whom it comes in contact. Such was the sort of 
undefinable sensation it created in the Black fa- 
mily from the eldest to the youngest. 

Simple Mrs Black^s profound and earnest in- 
quiries after Lord Rossville-^her hopes that he 
had not. been the worse of his ride — ^that he had 
got home before jthe hearty shower, &c. &c. Sec. 
were all answered in a general way, and with an 
air of indifference, which, as Mrs Black after- 
wards declared, said very little for his natural af- 
fection. Even Miss Bell had an instinctive feel- 
ing, that her airs would be all thrown away upon 
him, and though she did drop her carbuncle 
brooch (a present from Hyder Ally to the Major) 
upon the carpet. Colonel Delmour never so much 
as moved his chair or assisted in looking for it ; 
while Miss Lilly turned over her Albumin vain, 
and in answer to her usual question of whether he 
was fond of poetry, he returned so ^brief and de- 
cided a negative as put a complete stop to all pro* 
ceedings on that subject. . The only one who made 
no attempts at display was the third daughter, 
Anne, s^ sensible, mildJooking girl, who, from her 


quiet unobtrusdve Bkanners^ was generally over- 
looked) and who now pursued her work in her 
usual calm way, careless alike of notice or ne- 

Colonel Dehnour certainly was at no pains to 
gain the good graces of the fiimily. He saw at 
once they were not the sort of peoj^e likefy to 
acquire any influence over Miss St Clair, conse- 
quently, he had no motiye to make him wish to 
ingratiate himself with them. And to hare been 
at the trouble of making the agreeable to such a 
set of plebeians, would have required some rery 
strong stimulus for one whose ruling principle 
was selfishness, and who never cared to please, 
unless to serve his own purpose. He staid long, 
in hopes Mrs Black and her daughters would 
have bad the tact to discover, that they were 
great bores in their own house — hxit no such dis- 
covery was made ; — on the contrary, Mrs Black 
redoubled her efforts to entertain her visitor-— 
she made many apologies for Mr Black being 
from home, and asked Bell what had come over 
the Major — just as the Major entered. The case 
was now dei^rate-^-scarcely able to conceal hit 
ill humour, he merely noticed the introduction o£ 


Major Wodddlby a sl^ht and somewhat haugh- 
ty bow, and took his leave. 

" Well, cousin,^ cried Miss Bell, as he drove 
ofP, ^^ I reaUy cannot say a great deal for your 
Colonel ; I think I never saw so ill-bred a man.**" 

^^ I canH jnst say that, Bell,^ said her mother. 
^ I^m sure he was nowise indiscreet, and we must 
make allowance for him, for you know we were 
all strangers to him, and, I dare say, he was just 
a little shy and strange at first — ^but that^ wear 

^< It's the oddest thing, that he should not like 
poetry," said Miss Lilly, ^^ for he is so hand« 

^* I don't think much of his looks," said Miss 
Bell ; ^^ he is a great deal too tall," eyeing the 
Major, who was the ApoUo Belvidere in her opi- 
nion, and who was, at least, a head shorter. 

^^ I think our Bob must be as tall by this 
time," said Mrs Black ; ^^ but I wish he may have 
taken the breadth with him, poor fellow." 

^^ I don't think he has the manners of a man 
who has seen much of the world," resumed Miss 
Bell again, looking at her lover ; ^^ no general 
conversation — ^has he ever been abroad, I wonder ?" 


^^ Come^ now,^ s^d the Major, tuming up his 
bronz^ visage, gilded with a strong yellow beam 
of delight ; " are you not rather too severe ? Co- 
lonel Delmour is surely a fine -looking man, and 
much admired, I understand, by the ladies." 

" I beg you will make some exceptions, M^or 
-—but perhaps I have a very bad taste," with a 
conscious smile. 

*^ I am afraid you have, indeed," returned the 
Major, with a laugh of perfect ecstasy. — " Tm 
very much afraid of it, indeed — What do you say 
to that, Mrs Black ? — Miss St Clair, don^ you 
think your cousin discovers a very bad taste in her 
choice of some things ?" 

Gertrude felt too much disgusted with the vul- 
garity and ill-breeding of her relations, to be able 
to reply ;— indeed, the only one she could, with 
truth, have made, must have been a cordial as- 
sent, and she recoiled from their famiUarity with 
a hautewr foreign to her nature. Mrs Black ob- 
served her displeasiire, but mistook the cause. 

" You must excuse our freedom, my dear," said 
she ; " but you see we make no stranger of you 
— ^we just look upon you as one of ourselves, and 
forget sometimes that your friends and relations 


we not ours — ^but there's one thing I can tell 
you,^^ continued she, with a significant smile and 
a half whisper, " that, though the Coloners not 
just so taking as his brother, we all think a great 
deal othinif and are all much pleased to. think, 

that -you know""-rrand Mrs Black smiled still 

more significantly. — " I assure you, Mr Black 
thinks a great deal of him — ^he says he'^s really 
a pleasant^ sensible, gentlemanly, well-informed 
young man.*" 

Still Gertrude's countenance did not clear up,- 
to Mrs Black^s great surprise ; for, like many 
other excellent wives, she thought her husband's 
opiiiion carried the greatest possible weight with 
it, and that Miss St Clair must needs be much 
flattered to hear that her intended was so much 
approved of by Mr Black. For the Earl, to adr 
vancehis favourite political schemes, had dropped 
some ambiguous mysterious hints of the projected 
alliance between his nephew and niece, which Mrs 
Black had easily manufactured into an approach! 
ing marriage. Rather at a loss what to make of 
Miss St Clair, and the coolness with which she 
listened to the praises of her supposed lover, Mrs 
Black now proposed, that the young people should 

VOL. I. T 


take a walk, and show their coudn something of 
Bellevue-^there was the born, and the Hawkhill, 
and the new plantation, and there was the poultry- 
yard — ^if Miss Gertrude was fond of poultry, the 
Bellevue poultry were reckoned the finest in the 
country side ; and loaded with Mrs Black'^s direc- 
tions and suggestions, the party set forth. 

No party, perhaps, ever set out upon a walk 
without some difference of opinion as to the road 
to be taken; but, on the present occasion, the 
matter was soon settled by Miss Bell, who remark- 
ed to the Major, that it was so long since she had 
seen his sister, Mrs Fairbaim, that, if her couon 
had no objections, she would like much to widk 
as far as the Holm. 

'' I have not seen your sweet Jittle namesake. 
Major, since he has had the measles, and I quite 
long to see him, dear little fellow ! and although 
it is an understood thing^ — addressing Gertrude 
— *^ that, in my situation, I go nowhere, yet the 
Major's sister, you know, is an exception, and she 
is such a sweet domestic woman, she scarcely ever 
stirs from home — it is quite a treat to see Mr and 
Mrs Fairbaim in their own family — it is really i^ 
beautiiid sight.*" 


The Major was, of course, all joy and grati- 
tude for this proposal, and highly flattered by the 
interest expressed for his little name-sosr in parti- 
cular, and the eulogy bestowed on the family in 
general. As for Gertrude, she cared little where 
she went. When people are uncomfortable, they 
, flatter themselves any change must be for the 
better, and there is relief even in variety of 
wretchedness. Forward, then, they set fer the 

The road was not of the most picturesque d^ 
ficiiption ; but, indeed, it would not have been 
easy to have found any such in the environs of 
Bellevue. But, at length, after skirting many a 
well-dressed field, covered with flourishing crops 
of oats, pease, beans, potatoes, &c. &c. Sec they 
entered upon the sheep farm, which, although it 
had nothing of the romantic or beautiM to charm 
the eye, yet, like all spots of imsophisticated na- 
ture, was not without attractions to those who 
love nature even in her simplest scenes. 

The ground was hilly, covered with a carpet of 
close, short, sweet herbage, except here and there, 
where still remained patches of heath and broom, 
or a whin bush and a wild rose scented the breeze, 




their prickly stems decked iivith " small woolly 
tufts, spoils of the vagrant lamb.**^ 

The air was pure and fresh, ^^ mmble and 
sweet,'*' and Gertrude stood inhaling it with de- 
light, as she felt her spirits rise under its exhil^ 
rating influence. The Major and Miss Bell had 
walked on before, Miss Lilly had left the party 
for higher ground, which commanded a view^ of 
the county town where Lieutenant CBrien was 
quartered, and Gertrude, to her great relief, was 
left alone wijth her cousin Anne. 

** If there were but deer bounding instead of 
sheep bleating here,'' said she, " I could fancy 
myself upon the very * Braes o' Balquither,' which 
you were singing about last night ;'' and she humr 
med the air — " No, I can't make it out — ^pray 
sing it to me again ;'^ — and Anne sung some ver- 
ses of that sweet simple ditty — 

Will ye go, lassie, go. 

To the Braes o' Balquither, 
Where the blaeberries grow 

'Mang the bonnie bloomin' heather. 

Where the deer and the roe. 

Lightly boundin' thegither, 
Sport 4he laDg simmer day 

'>f ang the Braes o' Balquither. 


I will twine thee a bow'r. 

By the clear silver fountain. 
And I'll cover it o'er 

Wi' the flowers o' the mountain. 

I will range through the wilds. 
And the deep glens, sae dreary. 

And return wi' their spoils 
To the bower o' roy deary. 

Now the summer is in prime, 
Wi' the flowers richly blooming. 

And the wild mountain thyme 
A' the muirlands perfuming* 
Will ye go, &c. &c. 

** Who would not be a hunter^s love,'" said 
G-ertrude, " to realize so sweet a picture !^ 

** Ah r said her companion in a mournftil 
tone, " if poverty were* there represented as it is 
in reality, this world would be a paradise, and 
we might all be happy.'' 

" S6, then, you think poverty the only evil in 
life ?"" asked Miss St Clair. 

" No. I spoke idly ; — not the only one ; — 
but'' — she blushed, and the tears stood in her eyes, 
as in a low voice she added, ^^ but the only one I 
have ever known;" — then, as if ashamed of hav- 
ing said so much, she turned away her head. 


For a moment Gertrude "Was at a loss to un- 
derstand her cousin'*s meaning ; but it presently 
struck her, that she must have formed some at- 
tachment where poverty was the obstacle ; and 
she would have continued the conversation in 
hopes of gaining her confidence^ but at that mo- 
ment the Major and Miss Bell, having retraced 
their steps in search of thdr companions, inter- 

" We thought we had lost you !" exclaimed 
the lady. — ^^ Major^ will you give my cousin your 
other arm ? — ^the descent is very steep now."" 

Grertrude declined the proffered aid, which she 
thought more likely to encumber than accelerate 
her movements ; and, besides, she wished to re- 
new the conversation with Anne, but in vain.^- 
The lovers, having exhausted their silly talk for 
the present, were now glad of a little variety, and 
they kept all close together till they reached the 



The great use of delineating abfiuzdities is, that we may know 
how far hvman folly can go ; the account^ therefore, ought, of 
absolute necessity, to be faitliful. 


The first appearance of the Holm was highly 
prepossessing. It was a larj^e, handsome-look- 
ing house^ situated in a well-wooded park^ by 
the side of a broad placid river, and an air of se- 
clusion and stillness reigned all round, which im- 
pressed the mind with images of peace and repose. 
The interior of the house was no less promising-— 
there was a spacious hall and a handsome stair- 
case, with all appliances to boot — but as they ap- 
proached the drawing-room, all the luxurious in- 
dcdence of thought, inspired by the tranquillity of 
the scenery, was quickly dispelled by the dijsccffd* 
ant sounds which issued from thence^ and, when 
the door was thrown open, the footman in vain 


attempted to announce the yisitors. In the mid- 
dle of the room all the chairs were collected to 
form a coach and horses for the Masters and 
Misses Fairbaim. — One unruly-looking urchin sat 
in front, cracking a long whip with all his might 
—another acted as guard behind^ and blew a 
shrill trumpet with all his strength — ^while a third, 
in a night-cap and flannd lappet, who had some- 
what the air of having quarrelled with the rest tif 
the party, paraded up and down, in solitary ma- 
jesty, beating a drum. On a sofa sat Mrs 
Fairbaim, a soft, fair, genteeUlooking woman, 
with a crying ^ild of about three years old at her 
side, tearing paper into idireds, seemingly for the 
delight of littering the carpet, which was ali^eady 
screwed with headless dolls, tailless horses, wheel- 
less carts, &c. As she rose to receive her- visitore 
it began to scream. 

" Fm not going away, Charlotte, tove — don't 
be frightened,^^ said the fond mother, with a look 
of indfable pleasure* 

** You no get up— you shan^t get up,** screen- 
ed Charlotte, seiaring her motWV^ gown fiercely 
to detain her. 

" My darling, yovCli surely let me go to speak 


to imcle— good uncle, who brings you pretty 
things, you know ;''— but, during this colloquy, 
uncle and the ladies had made their way to the 
enthralled mother, and the bustle of a meeting and 
introduction was got over. Chairs were obtained 
by the footman with some difficulty, and placed 
as close to the mistress of the house as possible, 
aware, that, otherwise, it would not be easy to car- 
ry on even question and answer amid the tumult 
that reigned. 

" You find us rather noisy, I am afraid," said 
Mrs Fairbaim with a smile, and in a manner 
which evidently meant the reverse ; " but this is 
Saturday, and the children are all in such spirits, 
and they won't stay away from me — Henry, my 
dear, don'^t crack your whip quite so loud — there's 
a good boy — ^that's a new whip his papa brought 
him from London ; and he's so proud of it f-— 
William, my darling, don't you think your drum 
must be tired now ?— If I were yoU I would givie it 
a rest— Alexander, your trumpet makes ra^A^ 
too much noise-— one of these ladies has got a 
headache— wait till you go out — ^there's my good 
boy^ and then you'll blow it at the cows and the 


gheep, you know, and frighten them— Oh 4 how 
you'll frighten them with it P 

" No, ni not blow it 9t the cows;— Fll blow 
it at the horses, because then they^U think if s 
the mail-coach.'*'-— And he was running off, when 
Henry jumped down from the coach-box. 

" No, but you shan't frighten them with your 
trumpet, for I shall frighten them widi my whip. 
Mama, aren't horses best frightened with a whip?'* 
— and a struggle ensued. 

^^ Well, don'^t fight, my dears, and you shall 
both frighten them," cried their mama. 

^* No, I'm determined he shan^t frighten them ; 
I shall do it," cried both together, as they rush- 
ed out of the room, and the drummer was prepar- 
ing to fi}llow. 

^^ William, my darling, don't you go after 
these naughty boys; you know they're always very 
bad to you. You know they wouldn'tlet you in- 
to their coach with your drum.^ — ^Here William 
began to cry. — " Well, never mind, you shall 
have a coach of your own — a much finer coach 
than theurs ; I wouldn't go into their ugly dirty 
coach ; and you shall have — *^" Here some- 
thing of a consolatory nature was whispered. 


Willuun was c<nnforted, and even prevailed upon 
to relinquish his drum for his mama^s ivory work* 
box, the contents of which were soon scattered on 
the floor. 

" These boyis are gone widiout their hats,'' 
cried Mrs Fairbaith in a tone of distress. ^ Eliza, 
my dear, pull the beU for Sally to get the boys' 
hats.^ — SaUy being dispatched with the hats, 
something like a cahn ensued, in the absence of 
he of the whip and the trumpet ; but as it will be 
of short duration, it is necessary to take advantage 
of it in improving the introduction into on ac- 
quaintance with the Fairbaim fandly. 

Mrs Fairbaim was one of those ladies, who, 
from the time she became a.mother, ceased to be 
any thing else. All the duties, pleasure^, chari- 
ties, and decencies of life, were henceforth con- 
centrated in that one grand characteristic ; every 
olgect in life was henceforth viewed through that 
single medium. Her own mother was no longer 
her mother ; she was the grandmama of her dear 
infants, her brothers and sisters werie mere uncles 
and aunts, and even her husband ceased to be 
thought of as her husband from the time he be- 
came a father. He was no longer the being who 


had claims on her time, her thoughts, her talents, 
her affections ; he was simply Mr Fairbairn, the 
noun masculine of Mrs Fairbairn, and the father 
of her children. Happily for Mr Fairbairn, he 
was not a person of very nice feelings, or refined 
taste ; and although, at first, he did feel a little 
lii^leasant wheii he saw how much his children 
were preferred to himself, yet, in time, he became 
accustomed to it, then came to look upon Mrs 
Fairbairn as the most exemplary of mothers, and 
finally resolved himself into the father of a very 
fine family, of which Mrs Fairbairn was the mo- 
ther. In all this there was more of selfish egot- 
ism, and animal instinct, thaii of rational sSec- 
tion, or Christian principle ; but both parents 
piqued themselves upon their fondness for their 
offspring, as if it were a feeling peculiar to them- 
selves, and not one they shared in common with 
the lowest and weakest of their species. Like 
them, too, it was upon the bodies of their children 
that they lavished their chief care and tenderness, 
for, as to the immortal interests of their souls, or 
the cultivation of their minds, or the improvement 
of their tempers, these were but little attended to, 



at least in comparison of their health and person* 
al appearance. 

Alas ! if there ^^ be not a gem so precious as the 
human soul,^ how often do these, gems seem as 
pearls cast before swine ; for how seldom is it that 
a parentis greatest care is for the immortal happi* 
ness of that being whose precarious, ^md at best 
transient, existence engrosses their every thought 
and desire ! But, perhaps, Mrs Fairbairn, like 
many a foolish ignorant mother, did her best, and 
had she been satisfied with spoiling her children 
herself for her own private amusement, and not 
have drawn in her visitors and acquaintances to 
share in it, the evil nught have passed uncensur- 
ed. But Mrs Fairbairn^ instead of shutting h^* 
self up in her nursery, chose to bring her nursery 
down to her drawing-room, and instead of modest- 
ly denying her friends an entrance into her pur- 
gatory, she had a foolish pride in showing herself 
in the midst of her angels. In short, as the best 
things, when corrupted, always become the worsts 
so the purest and tende^est of human affections, 
when thus debased by selfishness and. egotism, 
turn to the most tiresoiue and ridiculous of hu- 


man weakneflses,— s trath but too well exempli- 
fied by Mrs Faiibaini. 

« I hare been nnich to blame,^ said she, ad- 
diesfling Miss Bell, in a goft, whining^ sick^^bild 
sort of Yoiee, *' for not haying been at BeDeYiie 
bmg ago ; but dear litde Charlotte has been so 
plagued with her teeth, I could not think of leav- 
ing her— -for she is so fond of me, she will go to 
nobody else— she screams when her maid offin 
to take her — and she won^ even go to her papa.^ 
^^ Is that possible ?^ said the Migor. 
^^ I assmre you it^s very true — shea's a yeiy 
nau^ty girl sometimes,^ bestowing a long and 
rapturous kiss on the child. *^ Who was it that 
beat poor piqpa for taking her from mama last 
night ? Well, donH cry — ^no, no, it wasnH my 
Charlotte— She knows every word that^s said to 
her, and did from the time she was only a year 

" That is wonderful T said Miss Bell; ^* but 
how is my little favourite Andrew ?" 

'* He is not very stout yet, poor little fellow, 
^^d we must be very careM of him." Then 
turning to Miss St Clair, " Our little Andrew 



has Kad the measles, and you know the dregs of 
the measles are a serious thing— much worse 
than the measles themselves. Andrew — ^Andrew 
Waddell, my love, come here and speak to the 
ladies.*" And thereupon Andrew Waddell, in a 
night-cap, riding on a stick, drew near. Being 
the Major^s namesake, Miss Bell, in the ardour 
of her attachment, thought proper to coax An«- 
drew Waddell on her knee, and even to open h& 
watch for his entertainment 

** Ah ! I see who spoils Andrew Waddell,^ 
cried the delighted mother. 

The Major chuckled — Miss Bell disclaimed, 
and for the time Andrew Waddell became the 
hero of the piece ; the Mains of the measles were 
carefully pointed out, and all his sufferings and 
sayings duly recapitulated. At length Miss Char- 
lotte, indignant at finding herself eclipsed, began 
to scream and cry with all her strength. 

^< It^s her teeth, darling little thing,*" said her 
mother, caressing her. 

" I'm sure it's her teeth, sweet little dear,*^ 
said Miss Bell. 

" It undoubtedly must be her teeth, poor little 
girl,^' said the Major. 


^^ If you will feel her gum^^ said Mrs Fair- 
baim, putting her own finger into the child^s 
mouth, " you will feel how hot it is,*" 

This was addressed in a sort of general way to 
the company, none of whom seemed eager to 
avail themselves of the privilege, till the Major 
stepped forward, and having with his fore-finger 
made the circuit of Miss Charlotte's mouth, gave 
it as his decided opinion, that there was a tooth 
actually cutting the skin. Miss Bell followed the 
same course, and confirmed the interesting fact — 
adding, that it appeared to her to be ^^ an uncom* 
monjarge tooth."" 

At that moment Mr Fairbaim entered, bearing 
in his arms another of the family, a &t, sour, 
new-waked>looking creature, sucking its finger. 
Scarcely was the introduction over — " There's a 
pair of 1^ r exclaimed he, holding out a pair of 
thick purple stumps with red worsted shoes at 
the end of them. ^^ I donH suppose Miss St 
Clair ever saw legs like these in France ; these are 
porridge and milk legs, are they not, Bobby ?^ 

But Bobby continued to chew the cu^ of his 
own thumb in solemn silence. 
" Will you speak to me, Bobby ?" said Miss 


BeU> bent upon being amiable and agreeable 
but still Bobby was mute. 

^^ We think this little fellow rather long of 
speaking,"" said Mr Fairbaim ; *^ we allege diat 
his legs have ran away with hia tongue.*^ 

^^ How old is he ?"" asked the Major. 

^* He is only nineteen months. and len days/" 
answered his mother> ^* so he has not, lost much 
time; but I would rather see a child fat and 
thriving, than have it very forward."" 

<^ No coihparison!"" was here uttered in a breath 
by the Major and Miss. Bell. 

'* There"s a great difference in children in their 
time of speaking,"" said the mama. ^^Alexan- 
der didn"t speak till he was two and a quarter ; 
and Henry, again, had a great many little words 
before he was seventeen months ; and Eliza and 
Charlotte both said mama as plain as I do at a 
year — but girls always speak sooner than boys — 
as for William Pitt and Andrew Waddell, the 
twins> they both suffered so much from jheir 
teething, that they were longer of speakmg than 
they would otherwise have been-^indeed, I ne- 
ver saw an infant suffer so much as Andrew 
Waddell did — ^he had greatly the heels of Wil- 

VOL. I. V 


ham Pitt at one time, till the measles puUed him 

A movCTient was here made by the visitors to 

^^ O ! you mnstn^t go without seeing the hdiy ,^ 
cried Mrs Fairbabn — ^' Mr Fairbaim, will you 
pull the bell twice fiir baby?'' 

The bell was twice nmg, bat no b^y answered 
the summons. 

^ She must be asleep," said Mrs Fairbaim ; 
** but I will take you up to the nursery, and you 
will see her in her cradle.'* And Mrs Fairbaim 
led the way to the nursery, and opened the shut- 
ter, and uncovered the cradle, and displayed the 

** Just five months— uncommon fine child — 
the image of Mr Fairbaim — fat little thing-— 
neat little hands — sweet little moutb— pretty lit- 
tle nose — nice little toes," &c. &c. &c. were as 
usual whispered over it. 

Miss St Clair flattered herself the exhibition 
was now over, and was again taking leave, when, 
to her dismay, the squires of the whip and the 
trumpet rushed in, proclaiming that it was pour- 
ing of rain I To leave the house was impossible. 


and, as it was getting late, there was nothing for 
it but staying dinner. 

The children of this happy family always din- 
ed at table, and their food and manner of eating 
were the only subjects of conversation. Alexan- 
der did not like mashed potatoes — ^and Andrew 
Waddell cotild^not eat broth — and Eliza could 
live upon fish — and William Pitt took too much 
small-beer— and Henry ate as much meat as his 
papa — and all these peculiarities had descended 
to them from some one or other of their ancestors. 
The dinner was simple on account of the children, 
and there was no dessert, as Bobby did not agree 
with fruit. But to make amends, Eliza^s samp- 
ler was shown, and Henry and Alexander's copy- 
books were handed round the table, and Andrew 
Waddell stood up and repeated — ^^ My name is 
Nerval,^ from beginning to end, and WiUiam 
Pitt was prevailed upon to sing the whole of 
" God save the King,^ in a little squeaking mealy 
voice, and was bravoed and applauded as though 
he had been Braham himself 

To paint a scene in itself so tiresome is doubt* 
less but a poor amusement to my reader, who 
must often have endured similar persecution. 


For, who has not suiFered from ihe obtrosiTe 
fondness of parents for theiT ofispring?— and wha 
has not felt what it was to be called upon, in the 
course of a morning visit, to enter into all the 
joys and the sorrows of the nursery, and to take 
a lively interest in all the feats and pecoliariti^ 
cKf the family ? Shakespeare^s anathema against 
those who hated music is scarcely too strong to 
be lyppUed to those who dislike children^. There 
is much enjoyment sometimes in making acquaint- 
ance with the little beings— much delight in hear- 
ing their artless unsophisticated prattle, and some- 
thing not unpleasing even in witnessing their lit- 
tle freaks and wayward humours ; — ^but when a 
tiresome mother, instead of allowing the company 
to notice her child, torments every one to death 
in forcing or coaxing her child to notice the com- 
pany, the charm is gone, and we experience only 
disgust or ennui, 

Mr and Mrs Fairbaim had split on this fatal 
rock on which so many parents make shipwreck 
of their senses — and so satisfied were they with 
themselves and their children, so impressed with 
the idea of the delights of their family scenes, 
that vain would have been any attempt to open 


the eyes of their understanding. Perhaps the 
only remedy would have been found in that bless- 
ed spirit which ^* vaunteth not itself, and seek- 
eth not its own.^ 

The evening proved fine ; and Gertrude rejoic- 
ed to return even to Bellevue. 



II y en a peu qui gagnent i ^tre approfondies. 

La BauYSBE. 

^^ What a sweet woman your sister is !*" said 
Miss Bell, who at present beheld every object 
connected with the Major tinged with ^^ Lovers 
proper hue.*' 

" I am very glad you like her,'' replied the de- 
lighted lover ; " and I flatter myself the longer 
you know her the more you will be pleased with 

" O, I have no doubt of that,'' said the lady. 

" You will find her always the same," continu- 
ed the Major. 

" That is delightful !" said Miss Bell ; « and 
what a charming family she has, it is really quite 
a treat to see them— I assure you, I don^t know 
when I have passed so pleasant a day." 

^^ I trust you will pass many such," returned 


the Major, brightening still more. ^* I flatter my- 
self my sister and you. will be sisters indeed.'*^ 

While this colloquy was carrpng on betwixt 
the lovers. Miss St Clair tried to bring her cou- 
sin Anne back to the suligect of their moming^s 
couTersation ; but Anne seemed either afraid or 
ashamed of having said so much, and rather 
shunned any renewal of the subject. Grertrude 
did not think the worse of her upon that account, 
but rather gave her credit for that delicacy of 
mind which made her shrink from making a con- 
fidante of one, who, although a relation, was, in 
fact, almost a stranger to her. 

<^ It would be folly in me, my dear cousin«^ 
said she, ^^ to make a parade* of offering to assist 
you at present in any way. I am neither old nor 
wise enough to advise, and I am quite as poor 
and as powerless as you can possibly be ; but if 
ever the time should come when I hare either 
wisdom or power — ^both I can never hope to have 
together,^ said she with a smile, — ^^ promise that 
you will then riddle me right, and tell me why 
poverty is the greatest misfortune in the world.^ 

They were here interrupted by a band of young 
Blacks, who, having descried them from the win- 


dow, had rushed out to meet them — all brea^es 
with haste to hear where they had been, and to 
prodaim, that Bob and Davy were arrived ; and 
upon advanemg a little farther, Bob and Davy- 
presented themselves in proprUa personis. 

Bob and Davy were two tall good-looking 
youths, dressed in all the extremes of the reign* 
ing fashions— small waists-^farush-heads — stiiF 
collars-^iron heels and switches. Like many 
other youths, they were decidedly of opinion, that 
dress ^^ makes the man, and want of it the fel- 
low,^ and that the rest was *^ mere leather and 
prunella.'*^ Perha(^s, after all, that is a species of 
humility rather to be admired in those who, feel- 
ing themselves destitute of mental qualifications, 
trust to the abilities of their tailor and hair-dress- 
er for gaining them the good- will of the world ; 
and who c&n tell whether there may not be more 
true lowliness of mind in a mop-head and high- 
heeled boots, than has been lodged in many a pil- 
grim^s scallopped hat and sandalled shoon ? Be 
thdt as it may, it was evident that Bob and Davy 
rested their claims to distinction solely on the 
outw^d man, and that the sentiment of Henry 
the Fifth was by no moans theirs,— 


It yeartis me not that men my garments wear. 
Such outward things dwell not in my desire, &c 

Introduced to their cousin, and the first cere^ 
monials oTer, Bob and Davy each began to play 
his part. Bob, being a military man, talked of 
parades, reviews, mess-dinners, and regulation 
epaulettes — ^while Davy, the writer^s apprentice, 
was loud upon Edinburgh belles, playhouse rows. 
Assembly Rooms^ and new quadrilles* 

" We are to be reviewed on the 27th,'' said 
Bob, addressing his cousin. <* Gunstown is only 
about thirty miles from this. I hope you will do 
us the honour to come and look at us — we shall 
give a ball and supper after it — ^my mother and 
the girls wiU, of course, be there— -Bell, you will 
be at our turn-out, wotft you ?^ 

^^ I wonder how you can ask such a question. 
Bob, of a person in my situation,^^ said Miss Bell, 
with dignity. 

** What a famous deid of fun we had in Edin- 
burgh last winter,'* said Davy ; " I was very of- 
ten at three balls in a night. You dance qtieg' 
drills of course ; country-dances are quite ex- 
ploded now in Edinburgh — they call them kitchen 
dances there^— there's nothing goes down now but 


waUtsaya and queydrills. — By-the-l^e, I dare 
say we could make out a queydrill here. Bell, do 
you dance queydrills ?^ 

^^ I never heard of a person in my dtuaiion 
dancing,^ replied Miss Bell with an air of con- 

" Aye, that^s always the way whenever you 
Misses get husbands, you grow so confoundedly 
stupid ;— but I shall not suffer my wife to give 
herself such airs, I can tell you. I shall make a 
point of her dancing every night." 

The brothers had come on piurpose to be pre- 
sent at the celebration of the nuptials, which they 
merely thought of as Bell'^s going off — ^a consum- 
mation to be devoutly wished for in a family of 
eleven, and an event indissolubly united in their 
minds with new coats, white gloves, wedding fa- 
vours, bride Vmaids, capital dinners, jovial sup* 
pers, dances, flirtations, and famous fun. Such 
being Bob and Davy, it may be inferred they were 
no great acquisitions to the family party, though 
they certainly were additions to it. Under the 
mistaken idea of being too genteel to do any thing 
for themselves, there was a constant ringing of 
bells, and calling for this, that, and t'other ; and if 


the hapless foot-boy could have cut himself into 
a thousand pieces, and endowed each particular 
piece with locomotiTe powers, all would scarcely 
have sufficed to answer the demands made upon 
him. Then, without any bad tempjsr, there was 
a constant jangling and jarring from mere vacao- 
cy of mind, and want of proper pursuit. They 
were all warmly attached to each other in a dis- 
agreeable way ; and, upon the strength of that at- 
tachment, thought they might dispense with all 
the ordinary rules of politeness, and contradict 
and dispute with each other upon the most trifling 
occasion. In short, it was not a pleasant dwells 
ing-place ; there was neither the peace and tran- 
quillity which the true spirit of Christianity dif- 
fuses amongst its votaries, nor the refined courte- 
sies which spring from cultivated minds and ele- 
gant habits. Anne, indeed, was an exception ; 
but she was so quiet and pensive, that she was 
completely sunk in the commotion that prevailed. 
Miss St Clair suffered particularly from the as- 
siduities of the two beaux, being both bent on en- 
gaging her in a flirtation ; but their attentions 
were received with so much coldness at times, 
even amounting to hauteur, that at length they 


discovered that their old flames Cecy Swan and 
Clemmy Dow. were much prettier girls^ and to 
Cecy Swan and Clemmy Dow they accordingly, 
betook themselves. 

Heartily tired of Bellevue and its inhabitants, 
irertrude longed impatiently for the marriage day, 
that she might return to Rossville. She felt 
anxious, too, about her mother, and the thoughts 
of the mystery in ivhich she was iuTblved dis- 
quieted her, and rendered her situation doubly 
irksome^ Unconsciously she cherished the desire 
of penetrating that dread secret ^ althou^, with * 
the natural thoughtlessness and gaiety of youth, 
her mind was often diverted from the contempla- 
tion of it ; yet there were times when it gained an 
almost overwhelming ascendancy over her, and 
she thought she could easier have submitted to 
any known evil, than have endured this unknown 

In Colonel Delmour'^s company, indeed, every 
painful idea was suspended, and she gave herself 
up to the charms of his brilliant conversation, 
and varied powers of pleasing, with a comjdete 
forgetfulness of every thing, save the conscious- 
ness of loving and being beloved, while, at the 


same time, with all the delusion of passion, sb^ 
yet closed her eyes against the light of conviction. 
His visits became so frequent, and so long, that 
they might have called forth some animadv^tsion 
in the family, who had been led by Lord Rossville 
to look upon her as the affianced bride of the elder 
brother, but all were too busy with the substantials 
of marriage, to have much time to bestow on the 
empty speculations of love. Mr Black had set- 
tlements to read over and sign, &c. Mrs Black 
had the innumerable departments of mother and 
housekeeper to fill-— duties which are always 
trebled tenfold upon such momentous occasions. 
All the powers of Bob and Davy's minds were 
exerted to the decoration of their persons — ^but 
all the emanations of their genius had proved in- 
sufiScient to enlighten the understanding of the 
Bamford tailor. Bob^s coat was sent home when 
too late for alterations, at least half an inch too 
long, while Davy's waistcoat was as much too 
short. The young ladies' gowns pleased better, 
and the children were charmed with their respec- 
tive suits and sashes. 

As for Miss BeU, she was like some bright 
planet^ the centre of its own system, round which 


ail inferior orbs revolve. She it was to whom all 
must look for bride-cake, and gloves, and favours, 
and all such minor consolations as fall to the lot 
of the single on such occasions. But no one^s cup, 
however it may froth and mantle, is ever full, even 
to the overflowing. Miss Bell^^s certainly seemed 
to foam to the very top, but it could still have 
held a little more. Many were the wedding pre- 
sents she had received from kindred and friends, 
according to their various means, tilllier chamber 
might have vied with the shrine of some patron 
saint. But amidst all the votive offerings, there 
was none from uncle Adam, although she had 
settled in her own mind, that unde Adam could 
not possibly avoid presenting her with something 
very handsome, whether in plate, jewels, or spe- 
cie, and her only doubt was, which of the three 
she would prefer. However, time ^me on, and 
uncle Adam was only to be seen in his usual atti> 
tude, withliis hands in his pockets, as if strictly 
guarding his money, and with a fiice of the most 
hopeless sourness. Miss Bell, notwithstanding, 
still kept up under the expectation that uncle 
Adam would surprise her in his own rough queer 



way some day, when she was not thinking of it. 
When that day would be, it would have been 
difficult to say, as there was no day in which she 
was not fiilly prepared for the surprise. 



Bid them cover the table, senre in the meat, and we will come 
in to dinner. 


The day previous to the marriage, the bustle 
that reigned in and around Bellevue was increas- 
ed to that intense degree, which attends all great 
events as they approach towards their consumma- 
tion. Uncle Adam, Miss Black, and Mr and Mrs 
Fairbaim, were expected at dinner, and, during 
the whole day, the steam of the soups, pies, pas- 
ties, &c. Szc. which issued firom Mrs Black^s 
kitchen, and penetrated to the very interior of the 
drawing-room, might (as some one has parodied 
it) have created a stomach beneath die ribs of 
death. To Gertrude, the commotion caused by 
what is called giving a dinner, was something 
new. The total bouleveraement of all orders of 
the community, where much was to be done with- 


out the proper means — ^where a sumptuous banquet 
was to be prepared by the common drudges of the 
kitchen, and where every servant had double their 
usual portion of work to perform, besides being 
thrown out of their own natural sphere of action. 
Then there was the running backwards and for- 
wards^-the flying up stairs and the rushing down 
stairs— the opening and shutting of ddors, or ra- 
ther I should say the opening of doors, as the 
shutting is an evil seldom to be complained of 
upon any occasion, luiless, indeed, when the call 
of "shut the door'' is answered with a slam, 
which shakes the house to its foundation. Added 
to all this, was the losing of Mrs Black's keys, 
with the customary suspicions attached to every 
individual, of having somehow or other got them 
about them-Hsuspicions only to be removed by re- 
peated raisings and shakings of the party suspect- 
ed, and even then not completely effaced, till the 
keys were found asusualin some place, where some- 
body must surely have put them, and where nobo- 
dy would ever have thought of looking for them* 
Th^i the nursery-maid was transformed into 
the cook's assistant, and the children were com- 
mitted to a girl who could not manage them, and 

VOL. I. X 


tliejr lifoke loose, and OTemtn the faonse, and r&- 
gigted ail imthority. Bnt doubtless iMny of nj 
veaden must ha^ wkaessed CT&ilar seenes, and 
ee^tored similar pe]?se<^ttons, pending tke prep*- 
ratbns for a dimier, which, like worthy Mn 
Black'-s, was to be about three times as large sod 
aB elaborate as was necessary* But many are the 
paiths to the temple of Fame, and hard it is te 
climb by any of tbem ! Mrs Blach was chiefly 
emulous of a character for her cKnners, and pro- 
bably laboured iixfinitely hi^dar to stuff a doaen 
dull bodies, than the Author of Waverley does 
to amuse the whole world. It was for this 
fihe thought by night and toikd by day, but, 
etrange to say, she had an enjoyment in it too, 
though, when that was, it would have been £fi- 
cult to determme— for the anticipation was care 
and fatigue-— the reality was oetemaBy and ande- 
ty — ^the retrospect was disappointment and provo- 

Uncle Adam was the fbst of the guests who 
arrived, and Miss St Clair was the only one of 
the family ready to reeeive him. She was in the 
drawing-room when he entered, and the habitual* 
vHiegar expression of his long triangular visage 

C941*T££ XXIX. 

ral«^ into aovdetlung like a smile at sigbt of her 
. -^^he even ^aied lummW by her side, and entered 
mto eoiiverpation with a degree of complacency 
very unusual with him. 

Embold^ed by his good biiuBoar, jGertrude 
ventured to admire a very fijie Camdlia Japonica, 
whieh, tpgeth^ with a pieoe of his favourite south- 
emwoodi cbeoon^^ed the breast of his ,coat. 

^^ I k^ naetfal^g aboet th^ things myser,^' said 
.he, hastily tearing it out of the butt<m-hole, as if 
ashamed of wearing any thing to be admired— 
liien stuffing it into h^ hand*«-^^ Ha'e, tak it, my 
dear — ^it e^pi" fr#e that place up bye'''— pointing 
in the direction of Bloom-Park. — " I'm sure they 
need aae ha'e sei^t it to me- — What ca' ye it ?" 

.Gertrude repeated the name. 

^^ It's a s^iiseless-like thing, without ony smell," 

, — ^p^ying .the southeiBWood to his nose as he 

«poke ;-*^^ bi:^ I daresay tibere's plenty o' them, 

and IVe nae use for ^^u, so you may gang up 

-bye w^en ypu likp, and t^ what you like." 

Gertrude thanked him, and as she adjusted 
the japonica in her dress, the old garnet brooch, 
now her only ornament, fell ou^, and in his gal- 
lantry, die old man stooped to pick it up. But 


no sooner had he taken it in his hand, than he 
uttered an exclamation of astonishment, and turn- 
ing it over and over, examined it with the deep- 
est interest. 

" Wha's aught this?'' mquired he. 

" It is mine,'' replied Gertrude in some siuprise. 

^* Yours !" rq>eated he ; "yours ! and whar did 
ye get it ? tell me the truth, whar did ye get it.?" 

" I got it from my nurse ; she gave it to me 
when she was dying, and I have kept it for her 

" And did she no tell you whar she had got it!*" 

" I think she said she had got it from her mo- 

" From her mother ! it was ance my mother's, 
— ^it was mine, and I gi'ed it to Lizzie wi' my ain 
hands whan last we parted, and she promised to 
keep it till her dying day — ^there's our initials"—- 
pointing to the back — " and the very year we 

parted." Then, after a long pause—" What 

was the name o' youi;^ nurse, and whar did she 

" Her own name was Marianne Lamotte— her 
husband's Jacob Lewiston, and she came from 
America; her father was French; but, I believe. 


her mother was Scotch, for she used to smg me 
many an old Scotch song, which she said she had 
learned from her.'' 

^^ I canna mak it oot,'' said Mr Ramsay thought- 
fii]ly.^<< but it disna signify, though I could, it 
wadna bring back life and time ;'' and with a sigh 
he tendered the brooch. 

*^ Pray keep it,'' said Gertrude ; " it seems you 
hare a better right to it than I have. I valued it 
merely for the sake of my nurse , but it is a still 
dearer memorial to you, and, therefore, I willing- 
ly part with it." 

" No, no," said he, rejecting the hand that 
offered it ; " what wad I do wi't ? At your age, you 
may please yoursel' wi' thae kind o' dead toys, but 
I'm ow'r aul4 noo to ha'e ony enjoyment in sic 
things ; the young may tak pleasure in thae ro- 
mantic gew-gaws ; ye like to look back whan ye 
ha'e nae far to cast your eye-^but at threescore 
and ten it's a dreigh sight to see the lang and 
weaiyroad we ha'e wandered — ^No, no, there's tiae 
pleasure to the aged in sic mementos ; they canna 
brii^ back youthfii' days and youthfu' hearts, and 
they are the only jewels o' life." 

326 THE INHEttlTANCt:. 

Gertrude could not urge it, but ftbift a feeliHifg 
oif deKcacy towards her uncle^s painibl reminiscen* 
ces, she put aside the trinket, and resoHed never 
again to wear it in his presence. 

It is rarely that feelings raised above the or- 
dinary pitch can be longindidgedin this strafige 
world, where the most opposite emotiows are 
constantly coming in contact, and where themilid 
is for ever in a' state oi ebb and flow. Mr 
Ramsay^s nature had been softened, and all its 
best ingredients called forth, atiiight of the love- 
token of his early days^ and the mounrfiei} associa* 
tions which followed in its train ; but the gentler 
current of his soul was speedily checked by the 
entrance of the various members of the family, 
as they came severally dropping in fresh firt)m 
their toilettes, and last, if not least, uncle Adam^s 
antipathy. Miss Bell. 

Squeezing herself on the Kttle sofa between 
Miss St Clair and him, she exclaimed, ^* What 
a beautiful flower that is, cousin !— where did you 
get it P'* 

" Mr Ramsay was so good as to give it to me," 
answered she. 

" Indeed ! I suppose then it is from Bloom- 


Park^ WBtclt ? You lia^e dumaiog gxe&okcmeA 
there, I understand — ^tbaA is wkal I regret so 
much at Thambank. You know the Major has 
taken that in the meantime ; but I don't think it 
will answer, as there are no hot-houses^ and the 
Major has been aecustomed to such channing 
fruita in India^ that Tm a&aid he will miss his 
pines sadly.'' 

^^ I suppose there will be plenty o^ gude neeps,'^ 
said Mr Ramsay ; ^^ neeps like succur — he can 
take ane o' them wlien he's dry." 

Miss Bell reddened, but affecting not to hear, 
returned to the charge. 

^^ Thombank is no great distance from Bloom^ 
Park, unck, quite an eagy walk, I should think." 

^^ I never measured it," wa& the laconic r^ly* 

Finding it was not by wpy of BloonwPark she 
was likely to arrive at uncle Adam's pocket. Miss 
Bell now went more directly to the point. 

^^ Do you know, i^ncle, I could be almost jea- 
lous of my cousin for having got that beautiftJ 
japonica from you» while poor I have not so 
much as a single leaf £rom you .by way of keep- 

Mr Ramsay, with a bow and a sardonic smile, 


here presented her with the piece of southern* 
wood he held in hiB hand. 

^^ WeU, uncle, I assure you, I shall value this 
very, much, and lay it up with the rest of my 
wedding presents — and by-the-bye, I have never 
showed you all the fine things my kind fiiends 
have presented to me. Gk)od old IMrs Waddell 
of Waddell Mains has presented me with a. most 
beauti^ antique silver cup, which, it seems, was 
the Major's christening bowl.'' 

^' It will be ancient enough then, nae doot,"^ 
observed uncle Adam. 

'' My excellent aunts have sent me a very 
handsome tea-pot, an d " " 

"A fool and his money**s soon parted; they had 
very little to do to send ony such thing.** 

" Why surely, uncle, you know it is tbe cus- 
tom, all the world over, for persons in my situa- 
tion to receive presents, and——*' 

^' Miss Bell Black) IVe seen something mair 
o' the world than youVe done ; and I can teH ye 
some o* its customs that ye maybe dinna ken yet 
-^in Russia, for instance, the present to persons 
in your situation is '^ 

" O ! for Heaven's sake .'"—interrupted Miss 


Bell, ynth an instinctiye dread of the knout-— 
" dotf t set up these bears as models for us— the 
customs of our own country surely ought to guide 
us on these occasions.'^ 

" It's a very senseless custom, in my opinion,^ 
said Mr Ramsay. ^^ If s like casting pearls before 
swine to be lavishing presents on a woman thaf s 
at the very pinnacle o' human happiness and 
grandeur — ^if s you that should mak presents to 
puir single folk that ha'enae Major Waddells to 
set them up wi' Ingee shawls, and carbuncles, and 

fans — and oo, I can compare ye to naethmg 

but a goddess the noo— -let me see, which o' them 
is't ? A Juno P na, I'm thinkin' it'll rather be a 

Here uncle Adam was to tickled with his own 
Jeu de mot J that he laughed till the tears ran down 
his cheeks. The insult was too broad, even for 
Miss Bell, who walked away in silent indignation ; 
then, recovering himself, he pointed after her to 
Gertrude, and said — 

" That creature's folly's just like dust— -drive 
it out 6' ae thing, and it just flees to anither." 

Miss Black was the next of the party who ar- 
rived, and Gertrude, attracted by her mildness and 


good sense, -vadd Mn faanre exchanged the gtH 
and Tkiegar of ande Adam for her more jie^atng 
coflnrerse. Bat the oMieperoiia mirdi of the 
children, and the noisy taftk of Bob asod Davy^ 
effisctiially prechided any iuteEchai^ of speech 
b^otid the ordinary sahitadons of Bieetii^* 

The Fairbaim family (indndmg the Major) 
yrete now waited Csr with outward impaiienoe by 
Mr Blac^, with inwavd anxiety fay Mrfr Blad^ ;-^ 
Mr Black openly arowed bis hunger— « Mrs Black 
vainly endeavoared to disguise her iqpprehensioiis 
that the beef would be roasled to » einder (a thing 
Mr Black coold not eiulttre)-— and that the rice 
(which the Major wa» so partiedar idMmt) would 
be all in a lump, instead of being — as well boiled 
rice ought to b o - ea ch and erery particular grain 
separate by itsek; All this^ and much SKxre, 
poor Mrs Black revolved in her own mind, aa she 
sat, like a second Mrs Blue Beard^ ever and anon 
calling to the children^to look out^ and see if they 
saw any body coming. 

At length the Fairbaim coach was descried, and 
loudly proclaimed. The bell was rung— the din* 
ner was ordered. Bob and Davy were ordered 
out of two arm-chairs they had taken possession 

CffAPTBR XXIX. ^ 881 

of: Mrs Black gncKitbed het gown, and put on 

ft ceremonioi» tnce^ while Mr Black hastened to 

the door to be ready to receive Mrg Fairbaifti 

with due- respect. Bttt no Mrs FatrfaaiTO wa^ 

there«-*in her ^^ad, however, was Miss Becky 

Bugttid, heg eaumn ; and die caase of Mrs Fair- 

baim^s absence was aceonnted for by reason of poor 

fitde Charlotte having beesei very et<m all day^ and 

her mama thinking there was a tooth coming ; 

and die would not leave her mama, and her 

mama coidd not leave her, &c. &c. &c All this 

was duly set forth by Mr Fairbaim on one hand, 

while Miss Becky was making her own personal 

apologies on ibe other, ^le was retdly such a 

figure, she was quite ash«ned to appear ; but she 

had no idea of coming, for it had been all settled 

that she was to stay with Charlotte, while Mrs 

Fairbaim was away ; and at one time Charlotte 

had agreed to let her mama go ; and her mama 

had dressed herself, and was all ready to set out ; 

and then she took a crying fit when the carriage 

was at the door, and so her mama was obliged to 

give up the point, and stay at home ; and then 

Mr Fairbaim had insisted on her coming in Mrs 

Fairbaim'*s place just as she was. Miss Becky^s 


apologies were of course met with protestatioiis, 
that there was no occasion for any — ^that she was 
perfectly well dressed-^that it was merely a fami* 
ly dinner — an easy party — none but Mends, and 
so forth. But, to tell the truth, Miss Becky'^s 
dress did requijre an apology, for the marks of 
children's fingers were upon her gown— her cap 
looked as if it had been sat upon, and her shawl 
even bore symptoms of having served to play at 
bo-peep I In short. Miss Becky had the taut en- 
semble of a poor elderly maiden aunt ; and such, 
indeed, was her history and character, as it is, 
alas ! of many others ; but a slight sketch may 
serve to describe the gen/U8i and give a toleraUy 
fiuthful picture of JunHmany. 



How' happy is the blameless vestal's lot I 


Miss Betty Duguid^ as a single woman, had 
vainly expected to escape the cares and anxieties 
of the married state. She had heard and seen 
much of the indifference or the ill humour of 
husbands—of the troubles and vexations of chil- 
dren — and she thought from these evils I am at 
least free ;— I can go where I like, do what I like, 
and live as I like. But poor Miss Becky soon 
found her mistake. Brothers and sisters mar- 
ried; — ^nephews and nieces spnmg up on all 
hands, each and all expecting to be distinguished 
by Aunt Becky's bounty, while every parent le- 
vied the most unconscionable taxes upon her time 
and capabilities. 

" Aunt Becky will give me this,'' said one ; 
« you know she has no use for money." 

** Aunt Becky will do that," said another ; 
^^ for she has always plenty of time." 


" Aunt Becky will go there/' cried a third ; 
'^ she likes a long walk.*" 

But even the labours imposed upon her by her 
own relations were nothing compared to the 
constant demands made upon her by the world 
in general, i. e. by the whole circle of her ac- 
quaintances ; — all imder the idea, l^at, as a single 
woman, she could hare nothing to do but olilige 
hear friends. When in town^ her life was de- 
voted to executing coxomissaxms from die coun- 
tjy--iiiq[uiring the character of seryants^^^hiziiig 
^vemeases and groofia8-**fixiding Mtualaons hr 
wet niars6s«-getting patterns iofpeUflfledothsfrom 
every shop in town — trying to get old silks match- 
ed with new — gowns maik — gauzes dyed — ^fea- 
thers cleaned-— fans maided, pazcels booked, &c. 
&c. &c. The letters always beginning:, '^ As i 
know you do not grudge your troudde, imd will be 
walking about at any rate, I must beg the fevoor, 
when you are quite at leisure/' and so and mo ; 
and ending with, ^^ As I find I am really in want 
of the &ings, and the carrier leaves town on 
Thursday, I trust you will ccmtrive to have every 
. thing ready by that time.^' But one of the letters, 
dropped by Miss Becky in the onirse of her per- 


ambulations, will best illustcate tMs part of het 
personal narratlTe. 

** My Deae Miss Becky, 

" I take this opportunity of letting you know 
we are all tolerably wdl at present, and trust you 
continue to enjoy your usual good health. I 
return the tea you sent last, as we ali think itTery 
inferior to that you sent formerly ; and as there 
has been rather a fall upon the price of teas, 
tfaeie can ^be no reason fer such a faUmg off in 
tibe quality ; and unless Candytuft can give some- 
thing oery superior at the same price, I would 
jugt retam it, and try some other shop, and hwe 
nothing more to do with Candytuft. EUza and 
Jane, with tfadr best lore, take this opportnnify 
of jsending in their old black velvet jielisfies, 
which they wish you to consult Yellowleys .tiie 
'dyer about ; they have been told that Uadc vel- 
Tt^ can hb dyed either grass green, or tri^t 
crimson, and if Yellowl^s can warrant their 
standing, they would prefer having them done 
a good rich crimson ; but if not, they must just 
put up with a Jkdl greexk, as much on the grass, 
and o^the bottle, as possible. 

" I jwn sorry to tell you your protegicy Jenny 


Snodgrass, has tumed out very ill. I find her 
kzy and idle, dirty, disobliging, and insolent, and 
not at all the person I was led to expect from 
your character of her. I must, therefore, trouble 
you to be on the look-out for another. You 
know it is not much I require of my servants ; 
but there are some things it is impossible to dis- 
pense with, and which I must make a point of. 
Of course, she must be perfectly sober, honest, 
conscioitious, and trust-worthy, and in every re- 
spect unexceptionable in her morals. She must 
be stout, active, cleanly, civil, obliging, quiet, or- 
derly, good-tempered, neat-handed, and particu- 
larly tidy in her person. All that I require of 
her is to be an excellent worker at her needle, a 
thorough washer and ironer, and a g&nmally use- 
Ail and accommodating servant. For such a 
servant I shall not grudge fifty shillings for the 
first half year, (tea included;) and, if she gives jper- 
fect satisfaction in eoery respect, I shaQ not stand 
with her for ten shillings rmyre for the next term. 
Margaret sends her affectionate remembrance, 
and when you are at leisure, requests you will or- 
der a pair of stays for her from Brisbane'^s as soon 
as possible, as she is in great want. She sends a 
pair of old ones for a pattern, but they don't fit ; 

CHAPTEtt XXX. 387 

you must tell him, they are both too tight and 
too short, and the shouIder-strapB too namnv by 
hfiUl straw-breadth. The old busk, she thinks, 
may do, or if it should be too short, perhaps you 
may be able to get it exchanged for one longer. 
As Flint the gun-smith'^s is no great distance 
from Brisbane's, John would be much obliged to 
you when you are there, if you would step to him, 
and tell him that he is going to send his gun to 
have the lock mended, and* to be sure to have it 
done in the most complete manner, and as soon 
as he possibly can, as the shooting-season is comb- 
ing on. When done, he may send it to you, 
with a couple of pounds of gunpowder, and a bag 
of small shot. No. 6. As the holiday time is com- 
ing on, we may look for the boys some of these 
days, and, (if it is not putting you to any incon* 
venience,) as the coach stops, you know, at the 
Blue Boar, perhaps you will have the goodness 
to have your Nanny waiting at the office for 
them ; and if you can manage to keep them till 
Monday, it will be adding to the fovour ; but they 
will require constant watching, as you know what 
romps they are, and, for any sake, contrive to. 
keep them out of the way of the gunpowder. I 

VOL. I. Y 


do not expect to be conftned before the 29th at 
soonest ; so if you caxk manage to come to tmbe- 
tvncot and the 20th, it will be very agreeable to 
us all, I assure you. I was in hopes I should 
not have had any more to trouble you with at 
present, but upon hearing that I was writing to 
you, Tom begs me to say, that he wishes very 
much to get some good fly-hooks for trout-fish- 
ing, four red cocks^ hackle-body, four black green 
ploverVtuft, with a light starlingVwing body, 
and four brown woodcocks^-wing, and hareV 
foot-body. I hope you will be able to read this, 
as I assure you it has cost me some labour to 
write it from Tom^s diction. He desires me to 
add, you will get them best at Phin^s, fishing-rod- 
maker, at the east end of the High Street, fifth 
door up the second stair on the left hand ; you 
will easily find it, as there is a large pasteboard 
trout hanging from the end of a fishing-rod for a 
sign. He also wants a pirn of fishing-line, and 
a few good^stout long-shanked fotf-hooks. If 
you happen to see your friend Miss Aiken, you 
may tell her the turban you ordered for me is the 
very same of one she made for me two years ago, 
and which I never liked. I have only worn it 


once, or twice at most, so, p^haps, she will have 
no objections to take it back, and make me a neat^ 
fashionable cap instead. I am a&aid you will 
think us very troublesome, but I know you do 
not grudge a little trouble to oblige your friends. 
Mr Goodwilly and the young people unite with 
me in best wishes ; and I remain, my dear Miss 

" Yours most sincerely, 

" Grace Goodwilly.'' 

" P. S. — ^Eliza and Jane. beg you wiU send 
them some patterns of summer*«ilks, neither too 
light nor too dark^ both ^figured and plain, with 
the different widths and prices, and also that you 
would inquire what is the lowest price of the hand-- 
somest ostrich feathers that can be had ; and if 
you happen to see any very pretty wreaths, you 
might price them at the same time, as they are 
divided between feathers and flowers ; those you 
sent from Trashbag's were quite ^oifec?, and look- 
ed as if they had been worn. Mr Goodwilly 
takes this opportunity of sending in a couple of 
razors, which he begs you will send to Steele the 
cutler's at the back of the Old Kirk Stile, to be 


sharpened immediaiek/f as that is a thing he <Mm. 
fwt want. Margaret bids me tell you to desire 
Brisbane not to pat magic laces to her stays, and 
to be sure that the stitching is stout and^nn. 
Any day that you happen to be passing SeatMi 
the saddlerX Mr Goodwilly begs you will have 
the goodness to inquire what would be the lowesi 
price of new stuffing the side-saddles, and new 
lackering the carriage-harness. I think it as well 
to send in my turban, that you may try Miss Ai- 
ken, and I shall think her extremely dMobUging 
if she refuses to take it back, as it will be money 
thrown into the^re if she does not, fi>r it shaD 
never go upon my head. 

" Yours with much i^ard, 

« G. G.'* 

** P. S.-— I find it will be necessary to scsid Je- 
mima in to Bain the dentist, to get some <^ har 
teeth taken out, as her mouth is gettii^ very 
crowded. I would take her myself, but cannot 
stand these things ; so must beg the favour of 
you to go with her, and see it done. I fear it will 
be a sad business, poor soul I as there are at leaii 
three that must come out, and great tusks they 


are ! of course, it is not every one I woiUd trust 
hfir with for scxii9Xk operation; but I know lean 
rely upon your doing every thing that can be 
done. If Miss Aiken agrees to exchange the 
turban for a cap, (as I have no doubt she will,) 
be 80 good as tell her to keep it rather more on 
the forehead, and not qtdte so much off^the ears, 
as the last one she made for me — ^which I never 
liked. Will you ask that good-for-nothing crea* 
ture. Heelpiece, if the cfaildren^fl shoes are ever 
to be sent home ? 

" Yours, in haste.'' 

Sometimes Miss Becky betook herself to the 
country, but though she often found retirement, 
thare was seldom rest. Whenever a gay husband 
was leaving home. Miss Becky was in requisition 
to keep his duU sickly wife company in his absence 
—or, vice versa, when a young wife wished to 
amuse herself abroad, '^ that good creature, Becky 
Duguid,^ was sent, for, to play backgammon with 
her old ill-natured husband ; and, when both man 
and wife were leaving home, then Becky Duguid 
was called upon to nurse the children and msu 
nage the servants in their absence. Invitations 


abounded, but all to disagreeable scenes or dull 
parties.. She was expected to attend all {toeottche^ . 
mentSy cbristenings, deaths, chestings, and bu- 
rials—but she was seldom asked to a marriage, 
and never to any party of pleasure. ^^ O, Miss 
Becky doesn^t care for these things ; she would 
like better to come to us when we^re in a quiet way 
by ourselves," was always the come ofiF. ** I don't 
know what the cares of the married life are^" Miss 
Becky would sometimes say, and oftener think ; 
" but Tm sure I know what the troubles of the 
single state are to a stout, healthy, easy-temper- 
ed woman like me : — What is it to be the wife of 
one crabbed old man, to having to divert all the 
crabbed old men in the country ? And what is it 
to be the mother of one family of childrai, to 
having to look aftet the children of all my rela- 
tions and acquaintances .^" 

But Miss Becky's reflections (like most people's 
reflections) came too late to benefit herself. She 
was completely involved in the toils of celibacy 
before she was at all aware of her danger, and 
vain now would have been the attempt to extricate 
herself Such was Miss Becky Duguid, waUdng 
in the vain show of liberty, but, in reality, fetter- 


ed hand and foot by all the tender charities of life. 
As such, it may be guessed, she formed no very 
brilliant addition to the Bellevue party. Indeed, 
such is the force of halnt, she now felt quite out 
of her element, when seated at her ease, without 
any immediate call on her time and attention ; for 
even her little doings carried their sense of import- 
ance along with them ; and, perhaps, Mrs Fry 
never felt more inward satisfaction at the turning 
of a soul from darkness to light, than did poor 
Miss Becky when she had triumphantly dispatch- 
ed a box full of weU-^ewecuted commissions. 

Dinner passed off uncommonly well— ^very 
thing was excellent. — Uncle Adam behaved with 
tolerable civility — ^the Major's black servant did 
wonders — ^the room was hot — the party was large 
"*the dishes were savoury — ^the atmosphere was 
one ambrosial cloud of mingled steams — ^the la- 
dies' complexions got high ; — ^but, at length, 
toasts having gone round, the signal was made, 
and all was over ! 



Bulk y«t busk ye* my bonny bridet 
Busk ye, busk ye, my wins ome marrow ; 
Busk ye, busk ye, my bonny bride, 
And let U8 to the Biaes of Yarrow. 

There will we sport and gather dew, 
Dancing while laverocks sing in the morning ; 
There learn frae turtles to prove true ; 
O ! Bell, ne'er vex me with thy scorning ! 

Allan Raxsat. 

B&IGHT shone the morning of Miss BelTs nup. 
tials, and all things looked auspicious. The col- 
lation stood ready, for Mrs Black, like Lady Ca- 
pulet on a similar, though less happy occasion, 
had been astir from the second crowing of the 

The guests were assembled— the clergymanhad 
arrived— the family were aU in full dress— the 
Major, in his catVeye brooch and London coat, 
(the envy of Bob and Davy,) looked the gay 


bridegroom from top to toe. Nothing was want- 
ing but the beauteous bride, and, at the proper 
moment, decked in India muslin — a full dressed 
head^ done up with a profiision of beads, and 
hraids, and bands, and bows— a pocket-handker- 
chief at her face, Mbs Bell was led in. 

The solemnity deepened — the clergyman clear- 
ed his voices— the children were admonished by a 
reproving lock^ that it was time^ put on their 
grave fiice»— the clatter of Bob and Davy was 
hushed, and all the little disjointed groupes were 
iHToken up, till at length the whole company was 
regularly formed into one large formal^ silent, so- 
lemn circle. Miss Bell was now on the verge of 
becoming Mrs Major Waddell— a metamorphosis 
which could not be expected to take place with- 
out some commotion. 

Persons of fine feelings naturally shed tears up- 
on these momentous occasions, and persons of or- 
dinary feelings think they ought to do so too. In 
short, the thing is always done, or appears to be 
done, and not to be outdone— Miss Bell sobbed 
aloud, and had even the vulgarity to blow her nose 
—although, as Bob and Davy afterwards declar- 
ed, that was all in the eye. 


Dr Johnson has remarked of the Episcopal mar- 
riage service, that it is too refined — ^that itis cal- 
culated only for the best kind of maniagech— 
whereas there ought to be a form for matches of 
an inferior description, probably such as that 
which now took place betwixt Major Andrew 
Waddell and Miss Isabella Black. That objec- 
tion certainly does not apply to the Presbyterian 
form, which depends entirely upon the officiating 
clergyman ; and, accordingly, is susceptible of all 
the varieties of which the mind and manners of 
man are capable-— £rom the holy meekness and 
simplicity of the Evangelical pastor, to the hum- 
drum slipshod exhortations of the lukewarm mi- 
nister, or the dull dogmas of the worldly-wise 
doctor. It was a person of the latter description 
who now performed the ceremony in a manner 
which even Dr Johnson would scarcely have deem- 
ed too good for the parties. 

Mrs Major Waddell having received the 
congratulations of the company, withdrew, ac- 
cording to etiquette, to change her nuptial-robe 
for a travelling habit, and speedily re-entered, ar- 
rayed in. a navy-blue riding-habit, (the Major^s 
favourite colour,) allowed to sit uncommonly 


well-*a black bearer hat and feathers— yelloir 
boots— ^Id. watch, and brooch containing the 
M«jor^s hair, set round with pearls. Altogether, 
Mrs Major Waddell looked remarkably well, and 
bore her new honours with a hapi^ mixture ci 
dignity and a&bility. 

The company were now conducted, to the ban- 
quet, which, though neither breakfast, dinner, or 
supper, was a happy combination of all. Th»e 
was, of course, much cutting, and carving, and 
helpmg, and asking, and revising, and eren some 
pressmg, and Will the foot-boy broke a decan- 
ter, and Black Caesar spilt a very elaborate trifle, 
but,. upon the whole, every thing went on pro- 
sperously. Mrs St Glair took care to seat herself 
by the Major, and, aware that when people are 
very haif>y, they are commonly very weak, she 
seized her opportunily, and easily cajoled him out 
of his vote. 

And now the trampling of steeds, and crush of 
wheels, announced the bridal equipage ; and the 
Major, his lady, and Miss Lilly, who was to ac- 
company them, prepared to depart. The lady, ac- 
cording to custom, was hurried, or appeared to be 
hurried, into the smart carriage-and-four that 



awailed her. Mbs TMytMawtd ; biit lis shetodi 
leave of Miss St Clair, she irhkpered, ^ I ribouU 
like very much to eorrespond with you, i f ■■■■ ^ 
but here Lilly was dn^ed away by her &ther, 
with a reproof for keefang the young people wait- 
ing. The happy party were now seated-— the 
door was shut— the smiles, and bows, and kissing 
of hands, was renewed-^he Mtgor^s black servant 
dkipped on the dicky— ^^ Go on^^ was ^nouneed 
—the drivers cracked their whips— tho carnage 
set off with a bound, and was soon rattling through 
the streets of Bamford,— where many a gaadng 
eye and outstretched neck hailed it as it passed. 

A great philosopher has asserted, that, '^ upcm 
all such joyous occasions, our satisfiiction, though 
not so durable, is often as lively as that of the 
persons principally concerned;'*' but, upon the 
present occasion, there certainly was little sjnnpa- 
thy in Mrs Major WaddelFs feelings, and those 
of her friends and acquaintances. While she 
rolled on, supremely blest, they solaced them- 
selves with commiserating her hapless fate. 
<' Quite a mercenary marriage—poor thing — ^a 
sad sacrifice — a man old enoi^h to be her grand- 
father—has met with seventeen refusals-*4brtune 


oome ia dP the telliiig— •liver Vke a plumb^ud- 
cUng-^Gdse teeth— -dreadlol temper,^ &c &c. 
were buzzed from one end of the town to the 
other ; but, happSy, none of their stings penetrat- 
ed the ear of the bride, vho sat in all the bliss oi 
posdpous ignorance. 

Though births, marriages, and deaths, occur 
every, d^y, still they continue to excite an int^est 
beyond the ordinary events of life* The former 
and the latter, indeed, though apparently more 
important occurrences, certainly do not engage 
the attention or occupy the minds of the great 
mass of mankind (or, at least, of womankind) so 
much as the less solemn act of marriage. Whe- 
ther these being performed without our own con- 
sent asked or obtained, afford less scope for ani- 
madversion, or that marriage is a state in which 
all are inclined to sympathize— the married from 
fellow-feeling — ^the single from feelings which the 
moralist or the metaphysician may declare, but 
which it is no part of my business to investigate, 
I shall, therefore, leave the point to be discussed 
by those who are more competent, and return to 
the company. 

It is no easy matter for a party in full dress 
11 • 


to pass away the morniiig when the businesB 
for which they assemhled is ovep-^-and where 
there is nothing to gratify any one of the five 
senses, it is then people feel, in then: fiillest ex- 
tent, the pains and penalties of idleness. As soon 
as their respective carriages drew up, the guests^ 
therefore, dropt off, and, as the last of them 
wheeled out of sight, Mrs Black thanked her stan 
she had seen all their backs. 



Thou wilt be like a lover presently, 
And tire the liearer with a book of words. 

Much Ado about Nothing, 

It was with pleasure Gertrude hailed the state- 
ly turrets of Rossville, as she beheld them rising 
above the rich masses of wood which surrounded 
them — ^and again her heart bounded with delight 
as she thought — ^^ All this will one day be mine 
—mine to bestow— r — ^ 

She did not finish the sentence even to herself, 
but the image of Colonel Delmour rose to her 
view, and she felt, that even the brilliant destiny 
that awaited her would be poor and joyless, un- 
less he were to partake of it. On alighting, Mrs 
St Clair hastened to Lord Rossville to report to 
him the success of her canvass, and Gertrude soon 
found herself, she knew not how, strolling by the 


banks <^ the river with Colonel Delmour by her 

It is universally allowed, that, though no- 
thing can be more interesting in itself than the 
conversation of two lovers, yet nothing can be 
more insipid in detail^— just as the heavenly frag- 
rance of the rose becomes vapid and sickly under 
all the attempts made to retain and embody its 
exquisite odour. Colonel Delmour certainly was 
in love-— as much so as it was in his nature to be 
—but, as has been truly said, how many noxious 
ingredients enter into the composition of what is 
sometimes called love ! Pride— vanity — ^ambi- 
tion — self-interest, all these had their share in 
the admiration, which Colonel Delmour accorded 
to the beauties and the graces of Miss St Clair. 
In any situation of life, his taste would have led 
him to admire her-— but it was only as the heir- 
ess of Rossville his pride would have permitted 
him to have loved her. But he was aware of the 
obstacles that stood in the way of his wishes, and 
deemed it most prudent not to oppose himself 
openly to them at present. He was conscious of 
the odium he would incur, were he to enter the 
lists as the rival of his brother, knowing, as he 


faiid aUdiongdoue, that l£at brother W8» the des- 
ti&ed Iiiislnmd of the heiresi^ of Rassviile: His 
sAm^ therefore, was to secure her affections in a 
climdestkie maimer— leaTing it to his brother to 
make has proposals openly, and when they had 
been rejected, he would then come forward and 
prefer his suit This mcmopttere would, to be 
suie^ expose Gertrude to^ the whole weight of her 
UBcIe^s £q)ka8ure, and, probadbly, bring much 
p«neoution wjpGn her, but with a character such 
as heres that would only tend to strengthen her 
afttachment^ and Colonel D^notof was too sel&A^ 
to prize the happiness, even of the woman he 
loTiedfbeyomdhisowv; or rather, like many others 
of the same nature, he wished that her happiness* 
should be of a reflected nature, emanatMg solely 
from faimsd£ Having bewailed the necessity he 
was uiid^ of leaving Rossville the fd&owing day^ 
he then gave way to the most vehem^t expres>^ 
sions of despair, at the thoughts of lea^g om a 
thousand times dearer to him thftn Hfe, and that, 
too, without the oidy solace that could soften the 
aii^;msb of separation, the belief that his feelings^ 
weve und^stood*— the hope that they m%ht on^ 
day bemutaal. 

Vol. I. z 


Gertrude remained silent— but there was a deep. 
struggle in her breast — ^her mother^s prejudice — 
her uncle'^s plans — ^made her feel the dangers and 
difficulties of their attachment, while they, at the 
same time, served to heighten it. Colonel Del* : 
mour saw what was passing in her Qiind^ and that 
he must now bring the matter to a decisi<m. 

With all the impassioned sophistry of which 
^he was master, he contrived to draw ftom Gee- 
trade an indirect acknowledgment that he was not 
indifferent to her, and he then urged the necessity 
there was for carefiilly concealing their attach* 
ment for the present. 

^' Can this be right ?" thought Gertrude— ^and 
her conscience told her — ^No — but averse as she 
was to every species of dissimulation and deceit, 
she was equally a stranger to the meanness of su&. 
pidon, and to suspect the man she loved was not 
in her nature— -love and suspicion were the very 
antipodes of her mind« She therefore quiddy 
banished the - slight doubt that had arisen, 
though she could not so easily reconcile to her- 
self the idea that she was acting a clandestine 
part in thus deceiving, by not disclosing to her 
mother what had passed. But Colonel Delmour 


besought her with so much earnestness to with- 
hold the communication for the present, and she 
dreaded so much to encounter her mother^s vio- 
lence and prejudice, that perhaps, on the whole, 
1^ was not sorry for an excuse to indulge undis- 
turbed yet a while in " Love'^s young dream." 
Had Mrs St Clair ever been the friend oi her 
daughter, Gertrude would not have acted thus ; 
for her nature was open and ing^iuous, and she 
would have disdained every species of concealment 
and duplicity. But the whirlwind and the tem- 
pest aire not more baleful in their effects on the 
material world, than tyranny and violence are de^ 
structive of all the finer qualities of the mind with 
which they come in contact. They must either 
imtate or deaden all those firee-bom affections of 
the soul, which, like the first vernal shoots, j)os- 
sess a charm in their freshness alone, which art 
and culture would in vain seek to impart. 

When the lovers reached the Castle, it was 
within a few minutes of the dinner hour, and Ger^ 
trade flew to her room, where she found her mo- 
ther waiting for her. 

" Where have you been, child .»*" cried she, in 
no very complacent tone. ^^ Lord Rossville haa 


been Askii^ far jtm at least a iomn times, wd 
no one CDuId give may arcamit of fOK.^ 

'< I have been walking bjr the mer, nunu,^ t^ 
pKed her daughter in some confiision. 

^* I wish you would leave off these idle TBgnhkb 
of yours. — I am quite of the EarFs c^hnon, that 
the less young ladies indu^ in sditory rambles 
the better,'* 

^^ Mama, I was notM*«*'' alene, Gertrtide would 
have added, though in some little trepidation, Imt 
Mrs St Clair intezTupted ker^ 

<< Oeme«»-CDni6, there ii&BO'tinoto waste-kt «ib 
ciisea^you will be late as? it i% so. make haste^*^ 
you ought to have remembered there was to be 
company here to-day, to whom Lord Rossvilie 
wished to present yea in due pempx-perhaps to 
s^rre some little political purpose ; but no mattes 
-#4ie is a'generous noble-minded man in cpite of 
his little pecuEantiefik He was an3Eious to luraa 
seen you to-day for two purposes, whidi I am eem-. 
missioned to Mfil; the first is, that you are to be^i^ 
stow youratteiition &Belueiv0iy\xp(ai Ml* BdhnMr; 
the next is, to decorate you with a splelidid gift 
tor the oecssion*«-luckily you are in loeb to do 
oredit to my work*«-<see, here is what your kind ge* 


neroos uncle preseiits you with ;^ and opening a 
jewel-case, she displayed a set of costly pearls. 
A pang shot through Gertrude^s heart as she 
thought, ^^ Would he have bestowed these upon 
me, if he had known that I am acting in opposi- 
tion to his wishes ? — Oh ! why am I compelled 
thus to play the hypocrite P' And she sighed, 
and shrunk back, m her iiu>ther would have deck- 
ed her in oriental mi^nMceiiee. Mrs St Clair 
looked at her with astonishment. 

^ What is the matter, Gertrude P«»«<this is a 
strange time to aigh, when adorning with jew^ 
whidi even the future Countess of RossvOlt^ might 
be proud to wear.^ 

Gertrude pasiivdiy extmded h^ ahn to have 
the eostiy braeeleta dasp^ on it; bul; Mrs Sc 
Cliir knew not that to those who had just tleen 
plighting hearts, even Goloonda^s tniiles would 
have seemed poor and dim«->at that moment Gef ^ 
tmda felt that wealth and honours were but its 
« paiuted di^r.'' 



Is there place to write above one Ioter*s name, 
With honour in her heart ? 

OldPluy. \ 

Meanwhile the carnages were begiiming to 
draw up in rapid suecession, and Lord Rossville, 
thoi^h fretting inwardly at his niece^s delay, yet 
received the company with much outward sereni^ 
ty. He felt that he was master of his own per- 
son and maimers, and all the dignity and urbani- 
ty for which he flattered himself he was so cele- 
brated, had now fiill scope in the a^nce of 
Miss Pratt His step was fiTmeic>-7-his chest was 
broader — his nose was higher*^his language was 
finer— his sentences were longer^^his periods 
were rounder — ^in short, Richard was himself 

Already he had uttered many sensible, and 

CHA]>T£ft XXXIII. 359 

even mrne vitty sayipgs, to such of his guests as 
had arrived; while his mind was busy concoct- 
ing a pmi to be applied to Sir Peter Wiellwood, 
when he should appear. But, alas ! for the inse- 
curity of the best laid schemes of human wisdom ! 
Sir Peter and Lady WeUwood were announced; 
(Uid-^horror of horrors ! who should enter with 
them but Miss Pratt i Who can paint the Earl 
as he stood, .f^ pierced with severe amazement?'" 
Nt)»t Celadon, when he beheld his Amelia struck 
a'Uackened corse, gazed with more msurble aspect 
than did his Lordship at sight of the breathing 
idrjai of Miss Pratt The half formed pun died 
on his lips — a faint and indistinct notion of it 
floated through his bewildered brain ;*— -it was to 
^ve been something about a Well and a Wood, 
^r a Wood and a Well; but the EarFs wits were 
jn a wood; and he could cmainly have, wished 
Miss Pratt in a well. In vain did he even at- 
tempt to say something of Wellcome ; — the words 
clove to the roof of his mouth, and his looks did 
not make up for the deficiencies of his tongue. 
^ut Miss Pratt had not been looked at for fifty 
years to be disconcerted, at that time of life, by 

860 THE IH9[£RITAV£E. 

the l<K>k8 of ssxy sum living, and she tlierefoTe 
aeco9ted him in her usual mamier. 

^^ WeU^ my.Loxd, you ^ee IVe been bMmr 
than fiogr irotd; I daresay you diiia^ tkiak of 
seeing me to^y, and, to tell you the truths I 
didn't think of it myself; but Shr Pet^ and '^ 
Lady Wellvood happened to call, enpass&ni, al 
Lady M^Caw's, and as they were so good as o£. 
fer me a seat in their canriagei I thought I 
couldn'^t dp better than just ctHne and make out 
the rest of my visit to yoo. Lady Betty, Lady 
Miljibank» Lady Restall) ke. kc &e.; and in a 
yKKment Miss Pratt was buzaing aQ round ^ 

At sound of the go^g,; Mrs fit Claic bad haa^ 
tily put the last finish to her daugfat^s dress, 
and hurried her to the drawiMg^oom. As thrj^ 
e^ter^d, all eyes were turned towards them. 
Lord Aossville was struck with tbe surpassiag 
baauty of his niece, and attributing it ^tirely 16 
the effect of his pearls^ he advanced frtm this car^ 
pie in which he was standing, and tak«ag h^ 
band with an air of gratified pride, led her to^ 
wards the compaaiy. He was in the act of prcr 

CHAPTER xxxni, S61 

genting her to a Dowager-MatcUoiiess, far whom 
he entertained a high yeneration, when, at that 
moment, Mr Ljrndsay entered from the opposite 
side of the room. Their eyes met for the first 
time since that eventftil midnight scene in the 
wood — a sl^ht snfiusion crossed his face, but in 
an instant the colour mounted to her very tem- 
ples, mA in atiswer to the Marchionesses introduc- 
t^ rettailEs, nhe stanmnared out she knew not 
what. The consciousness of her confttsion only 
serred to increaise it-«H»he was awar^ that the eyes 
of the company were upon her, but eh^felt only 
the influence of Colonel DelmourV 

Lord RossviUe, attributing his niece^s embar-. 
rassment solely to awe and respect for himself 
»id his guests, was beginning to reassure and 
encourage her in a manner to increase her con- 
liosioii tenfbid, when fortunately dinner was an- 
nounoed; Amid the usual bustfe 6f fixing the 
order of procession, with all the accompanying 
ceremonies necessary to be observed in walking 
from one room to another, Gertrude was recover- 
ii^'her presence of mind, when, as Miss Pratt 
passed, leaning on the arm of her ally, Sir Peter, 


she whispered, *^ Aye ! these are pearls of great 
price, indeed ! So, so-^HSomebody has come goad 
speed. Love, like light, will not hide, ah, ha T 
and with an intolerable tap of her &n, and a sig^ 
nificant chuckle, on she pattered, while again 
Gertrude^s cheeks were dyed with blushes. At 
that miWEient Col<mel Delniour, who had heard 
Miss Pratt's remarks, accidentally trod upon her 
gown in such a manner as almoin to tear away the 
fkirt from the body. 

^^ Was there ever the like of this P^ cried she, 
reddening with anger. '^ My good Plowman's 
gauze ! Colonel Ddmour, do you see what you've 
done ?^ But Colonel Ddmour, without deign- 
ing to take the least notice of the mjury he had 
inflicted, passed on to offer bis ann to one of the 
Miss Millbanks. 

Miss Pratt's only solace, therefore, was the 
sympathy of Sir Peter, to whom she detailed all 
the mischief Colond Delmour had d<me her, first 
and last, concluding with a remark, which, though 
in an affected whisper, was intended to reach his 
ear*— -that indeed it was no wond^ he came such 
bad speed at the courting — «he had ne<^dto be both 


a bold woman and a rich one, who would choose 
such a rough wooer. This disaster, however, had 
the effect of a quietus upon Miss Pratt for some 
time, ^nd Lord Rossville got leave to expand to 
Ms utmost dimensions, unchecked by any inter- 
ruptions from her. 

None of the company, now assembled, seemed 
to have any particular part to play in the great 
drama of life ; they were all common-place, well- 
bred, eating and drinking elderly lords and la- 
dies, or well-dressed, talking, smiling^ flirting, 
masters and misses. Gertrude was as usual 
appropriated by Mr Delmour, /who paid her 
much attention, and some very pretty compli- 
ments in a gentlemanly but somewhat business- 
like manner. Colonel Delmour sat, on the other 
band, silent, thoughtM, and displeased, neglect- 
ing even the comm(m attentions which politeness 

Mr Lyndsay was on the opposite side of the 
table, and upon his asking Miss St Clair to drink 
wine with him, Colonel Delmour turned his eye 
quickly upon her, and again a deep blush man- 
tled her cheek8,--Hsomething, perhaps, of wound- 


ed pride at the fnispicioii implied in his ^bace, 
or U may be of that shame natural to the inge- 
mums mind at the saam of mystery and conoeal- 
ment. Whatev» its canse, its effect was snffi- 
ciently visible on Ctdonel DehBOHt ; he tonied 
pale with suppressed anger — ^bit his lip— -nor ad- 
dxtsssed a single word to her durii^ the whdte of 

There is only this diflBerence between a smnaur 
and a wint» party^ that in irintef the company 
form into one large elnster mnnd the fee^iand ia 
iuiBonef .th^'fidbinio little dcteehed;gn0upcB» and 
an scsttewd all over ^e aparlmeott Upen 
entering the dxawing*room, Gerftmde had ma- 
consciously seated herself apart fiom every body 
at an open window, where she thought she was 
contemplating the beams of the setting su aB 
Ihey glowed upon the hills, and glittered throuj^ 
the rich green foliage of some intervenitig^ elnifl» 
But, in fiust, she was rammatn^ on (die viddbus 
ooeurrenees of the day, and the awdnratd prediea^ 
nent in whidi die found herself placed with Mr 

She was roused firom her reverie by some one 


ptttlUBg their hamda before* her eyes, and present- 
ly the dreaded accents of Pratt flteote Ym ear, as 
she strode iqps ^' As peBsive I thought of my 
love, eh ?"" Then, drawing in a chair, she seated 
herself close by Miss St Clair, and taking her 
hand with tua ait of fiaendly sympniby and per- 
fect security, she bc^an— - 

^* I^ sure it mtst be a reBef to you to hare 
gilt away from the dinner-table to-day. I really 
fek fer you, for I know by experience what my 
geititanan k, when he is in his tantrams ; did you 
see how he tras fike to tear me in pieces to-day 
fyft nothing' bat because I happened to see how 
the hmA lay between a certain person and you ? 
3vs^ look at my good FlowmanV gauze,*^ turning 
round. *^ I assure you, my dear, I was very much 
afrind, at one time^ that you would have been 
taken m by him ; for I saw that he made a dead 
set at you from the first, and he can be verjr agree- 
aUe when he chooses ; but, take my word for it, 
fae^s a very impertibnent , ill-bred, ill-tempered man 
for aU that.'' 

Colouring with confiisbn ami indignation, Ger- 
trade had sat silently endufing the obloquy U- 


vished on her lover, from utter inability to inter* 
nipt her ; but at this climax she made a moye- 
roent to extricate herself, which, howerer, was in 

Miss Pratt again seised the hand which had 
been withdrawn, and with a significant squeese, 
resumed — " You needn'^t be a&aid oi me, my 
dear, your secret'^s safe with me ; and to t^ you 
the truth, Fye suspected the thing for some time. 
I only wish you had looked about you a little ;, 
there^s Anthony Whyte has never so much as 
seen you yet ; if he would but make up his mind 
to marry, what a husband he would make ! very 
different from our £riend the Colonel, to be sure ; 
many'*s the sore heart his wife will have, aiid 
many a sore heart he has given already with hia 
flirtations, for he's never happy but when he^s 
making love to somebody or other, married or 
single, it's all the same to him.*^ 

^^ Miss Pratt,'^ cried Gertrude, in great ^no- 
tion, as she again tried to disei^age herself from 
her, " I cannot listen t o ^ 

" WeH, my dear, it's very good of you to stand 
up for him/' with a pat on the shoulder ; ^^ &f 


it^s seldom ladies take such a lift of their cast lo^ 
vers ; but it^'s as well you should know all youVe 
escaped"^ — ^ihen lowering her voice to a mysteri* 
ous whisper, ^^ Just to give you one single trait 
of him, which I know to be a fact^^what do 
you think of his owing Edward Lyndsay seven 
thousand pound for his game debts ?-<-^Tbat 
I can pledge myself for«— I was staying] in the 
house with them both at the time. I was up- 
on a visit to Lady Augusta in London, and X 
had good access to see what went on ; and I saw 
rather more too than what they thought of.x— 
Edward Lyndsay was jiist of age then ; and he 
was invited there to be presented and introduced 
by the Dehnours,— I suspect there was a scheme 
for getting Edward to one of the misses — but it 
wouldnH do. Well, the Colonel was by way of 
introducing him into the fashionable circles, and 
he soon landed him to the gaming-table, where he 
lost some money ; but what do ye think of his 
having to pay seven thousand pound and upwards 
for the Colonel ? — seven thousand pound gambled 
awayin one night, and nota shilling to pay it ! The 
consequence was, he must have sold out, and been 


nxmed for evar, if Edward Lyndsay had ik6i ad- 
vanced the mcmey ; and, to this day, I^Ilbe bo«ad 
for it, he has nevor toadied one hal^nny of piin-* 
dpal or interest. Where was it to come £rc»n? He 
lives &f beyond his income — anybody may see 
lfa»t,<— with his curricle and his fine horses, aad 
Ids groom and his valet ; while there^s the person 
that he owes all that money to,, keeps no carriage, 
and rides all over the country witboiut so mudi aa 
a servant after him ; and my gaafleman can?t go 
to a neighbours house without carrying a retinue 
like a prince aloi^ with him. But the provoking 
thing is, there^s Lord RossviHe and many other 
people crying outupoftEdward&rhi8e:Etravagaiiiee 
and f<dly in having muddkd away bis money, and 
iK)t Mving as he should do, and making no figure 
kt the world-^when I know that he's just pineh« 
ing and saving to make up the money and ek»r 
his estate from the debt he contracted upon it fot 
his pretty cousin there I I once gave Lord Boss^ 
viUeahint of how matters stood, but he^s so ]afiitt»« 
atedmth these Delmours, I thought he wouldbaerd 
worried me-^not that he^s veiy &nd of theCdo«< 
nel, or likes his company--^b«t he's proud t£him. 


because fae^8 the fashion, dnd has made a figure-^ 
aii4 so he goes on telling every body what great 
characters the Delmours are. I assure you, if s 
all I can do to keep my tongue within my teeth 
sometimes ;-— but Colonel Delmour^s a man I 
wouldnH like to provoke.— What do you think of 
his having the impertinence to tell me, that, if he 
found me meddling in his affairs, he would pull 
Anttumy Whyte^s nose for him ! I should like 
to see him offer to lay a finger on Anthony 
Whyte ! But thaf s just a specimen of him— 
O} he's an insolent, extravagant, selfish puppy ! 
—But, are you well enough, my dear ?'" 

Gertrude had made many ineffectual attempts 
to stop the torrent of Miss Pratf s invective ; but 
that lady was no more to be stopped in her career 
than a ship in full speed, or a racer on the course. 
At length uttering an exclamation, she abruptly 
octricated herself from her grasp, and quitted the 

There was commonly a mixture of truth and 
falsehood in all Miss Pratfs narrations ; but it 
must be owned the present formed an exception 
— ^perhaps a solitary one, to her ordinary prao- 
tice. She had for once told a round unvarnished 

VOL. I. A a 


tale, with merely a litde exaggeration as to the 
sum, and firom once she had spoken from actual 
knowledge, not from mere conjecture. Miss 
Pratt had, by some means or other, best known 
to herself, contrived to lay her hands upon a let- 
ter of Colonel Delmour^s, which had led her into 
the secret of the money transaction — a transac- 
tion which, from honour and delicacy on the one 
side— pride and shame on the other, would other- 
wise have been for ever confined to the parties 

In vain did Gertrude strive to stiU the tumult 
of her mind in the silence of her own chamber — 
in vain did she repeat a thousand times to herself 
— " Why should I for an instant give ear to 
the paltry gossip of a person I despise ? — How is 
it that I can be guilty of injuring the man I love 
by yielding the shadow of belief to the calumnies 
of a Miss Pratt ? — No, no, I do not-— I will not 
believe them. — Shame to me for even listening to 
them ! — False -^fickle — ^mercenary — a gamester 
— impossible f^ 

Alas ! Gertrude believed it was impossible, 
because she loved — ^because all the affections of a 
warm, generous, confiding heart, were lavished on 


this idol of her imagination, which she had deck- 
ed in all the attributes of perfection. And yet, 
such is the delusion of passion, that, could she 
even have beheld him bereft of all those virtues 
and graces with which her young romantic heart 
had so liberally invested him — even then she 
would not have ceased to love. Ah ! what will 
not the heart endure, ere it will voluntarily sur- 
render the hoarded treasure of its love to the cold 
dictates of reason, or the stem voice of duty! 

972 THE INilARlTANCtt. 


t htm hast thcu with jeakmqr infbcted 
The sweetnetB of affiance ! 

It was so long ere Gertrude could compose 
herself sufficiently to return to the drawmg-room, 
that, when she did, she found the gentlemen had 
already joined the party. In some confusion she 
took the first seat that offered^ which happened 
tobepartof aso& on which one ofthe Miss Mill- 
banks was lounging, and on the back of which 
Mr Lyndsay was leaning. But it was not till she 
had seated herself that she was aware of his vici- 
nity. To add to her embarrassment, Miss Pratt 
crossed from the opposite side of the room, and 
took her seat along side of her. 

^^ I was just going to look for you, my dear,^ 
said she, in one of her loud, all-pervadia^«his- 

pers ; ^^ I was afraid you wasn^t very ^Hr but 



upon Baying that to Mrs St Clair, she said, she 
daresay^d you were just taking an evening ramUcf, 
for that you^re a great moonttght; stroller, like 
some othcfr people,* with a significant smile at Mv 
Lyndsay, and again Gertrude felt the c<dour 
mount to h^ cheeks. Sh^ raised her eyes, but 
m<et his fixed on her willi Buch an expredsion of 
deep and thoughtfid inquiry, as redoubled hev 
confusion ; and, scarcely knowing what she said, 
Ae at|;ered an exdamation at the heat of the 

*^ Are you too hot, my dear r* cried her tor* 
mentor, taking a fan out of hear pocket, and rising 
as she spoke ; ^^ then here^s work for you, Mr Ed? 
^ard; sit you down there and' fan Miss St 
CUur-Hiot that I want to make a coolness b0- 
tweeni ye,* added she, in a half whisper, loud 
enough to reach Colonel Delmour, who stood by 
^e fire imping hid coffee ; ^^ but Z really don"! 
ihink the roomys hot ; it must ju6t be coming in 
&om the cold air that makes you feel the f oom 
^arm.— *You would do well, Mr Edward, togite 
this fair lady a lecture on her moonligfat ram* 

^^ It is insupportable r cried Gertrude, starting 


uf^, imable longer to endure Miss Pratt^s fmk-a- 
propoa observations. 

" It is very hot,'' said Lyndsay, scarceljr lesa 
embarrassed than herself. '^ Shall we seek a ]ittk» 
firesh air .at the window P" And offering his 
arm, he led her towards one, and threw it open, 
Gertrude's agitation rather increased than dimi* 

; << Oh !•— what must you think of meT at 
length she eicdaimed, in a low voice of repressed 

" Were I to tell you,'- replied Mr Lynd^y in 
some emotionr— ^^ I fear you would think me very 

^ Impossible !" said Gertrude, with increasing 
agitation as she advanced on this perilous subject 
— " I feel that I must ever—'* She stopped-r- 
her mother's caution, her own promises, recurred 
to her, and she felt that her impetuosity was hur- 
rying her beyond the bounds prescribed. Both 
remliined silent, but Lyndsay still held her hand^ 
and looked upon her with an expression of no com- 
mon interest. He was, however, recalled to other 
considerations by the approach of Mr Delmour 
when, relinquishing her hand, he made some re^ 


mark on the heat of the room having been too 
much for Miss St Clair. 

f ^ It is only in the sphere of my fair cousin her- 
self,^ said Mr Delmour, with a bow and a smile ; 
^^ the fire of her eyes seldom fails to kindle a flame 
wherever their influence is felt.'' 

Gertrude scarcely heard this flat, hackneyed 
compliment ; but she felt the taunt implied, when 
Colonel Delmour, who was always hovering near 
her, said with asperity — 

*^ Such fires, however, are sometimes mere ig- 
ne«/a^, which shine only to deceive.'' 

" A cruel aspersion upon glow-worms, and la- 
dies' eyes," said Mr Lyndsay — " since both may, 
and certainly do, sometimes shine without any 
such yricked intention." 

« Were it not that the thing must be," said 
Mr Delmour, with a bow to Miss St Clair — " I 
should imagine it would be diflicult to overheat 
this room ; it is large, not less, I take it, than 
forty by thirty, lofty, prodigious walls, and a north- 
west exposure ; if it were well lighted, indeed, 
that might have some efiect, but at present, it is 
rather deficient ; there ought to be, at least, a 
dozen lamps instead of those pale inefiectual 


yfax candles ; but, in fiict, it is not every one who 
knows how to light a room ; — ^ixi a weH-Iit room> 
th^e ought not to be a vestige of shade, while 
here, for instance, where we are standing, it is ab- 
solute darbaess visible.^ 

^^ Yes, it is a' sort of a Pandelnoniiun light,^ 
said Colonel Delmour, scomftilly. 

" The inind is its own place, you know, Del- 
mour," s^d Mr Lyndsay ; " and in itself — ^^ 
he stopped and smiled. 

^^ Go on,^ cried Colonel Delmour, in a voice 
of suppressed anger ; ^* pray, donH be afiraid to 
finish your quotation.*" 

Mr Lyndsay repeated,**-^^ can make a heaven 
of hell, a hell of heaven.''* 

Colonel Delmour seemed on the point of giving 
way to his passion ; but he checked himself, and 
affected to laugh, while he said — '^ A flattering 
compliment imj^ed, no doubt, but if I am the 
Lucifer you insinuate, I can boast of possessing 
his best attributes also, for I too bear a mind not 
to be changed by place or time, and in my creed, 
constancy still ranks as a virtue." He looked at 
Gertrude as he pronounced these words in an em- 
phatic jniinn^r. 


^^ What fli^ yoa bH doing in this dark comer ?^' 
asked Lady Betty/ as she advanced vhh Fhna 
vunder her arm. 

" We came here to be cool,^ answered Mr 
Lyndsay, ^^ and we are all getting v^ry waitn.^ 
: ^* That is most extraordinary,^ said her Lady- 
£hip-^^^ but did any of you lift the third TolusftB 
of The Midnight Wanderer F'' 

** Well thank you to pull down tlmt win^ 
dow,^ cried Miss Pratt. " I wonder what you're 
all made of, for we are p^ectly starving here 
-*8it a little more this way. Sir F^em-^your 
moonlight days and mine are both over.— ^In- 
deed, as Anthony Whyte «tys, I never see any 
thing hut a swelled &ce and a flannel lappet 
an the moon.*^' Then going to Mr Lyndsay, she 
toudied his elbow, and beckoned him a little 

«< So— -I wish you joy— rthe cat's out of the 
bag-t-but take care what you're about, for a c^^ 
tain person,'' pointing to Colonel Delmour, " will 
be ready to ^itte your nose off— Ton my word, 
you quiet people always play your cards best af- 
ter all ;'^ — and with a fiiendly pat on the back, 
.Miss Pratt whisked away, and the next minute 


was busding about a whist party with Lord Ross- 
ville and Sir Peter. 

The arrangement of their table was always a 
work of delicacy and difficulty— the Earl was fond 
of whist, and so was Miss Pratt ; — and for upwards 
of thirty years they had been in the occasional ha- 
bit of playing together in the most discordant man- 
ner imaginable. Miss Pratt played like lightning 
—the Earl pondered every card, as thoi^h life de- 
pended on the cast Every card-— every spot of a 
card, out or in, was registered in Pratt^s memory, 
ready at a call. The Earl was a little confiised, 
and sometimes committed blunders, which were 
invariably pointed out, and animadverted upon by 
Miss Pratt, whether as his antagonist or his part- 
ner. Then she had the impertinence to shake her 
head, and hem, sigh, and even groan at times ; 
and to sum up the whole, when they played to- 
gether, she had the assurance to insist upon tak- 
ing the tricks, which was an usurpation of power 
beyond all endurance. 

While the seniors of the company were arrai^- 
iiig themselves at their several card parties, the 
younger part repaired to the music-room, where 
Gertrude was urged to sing by aU^ present, ex- 



o^ Colonel Detmour, who pr^senred a moody si- 
lence. Teazed into compliance, she at length 
ieated herself at the harp^ and began to prelade. 
' " You accolhpany Miss St Clair, Frederick p'' 
said Mr Delmour to his brother, in a tone of in*- 

^^ Miss St Clair has found out, that I am a 
bad accompaniment,^ answered he in a manner 
which only Gertrude could understand. *' To one 
who sings so true, so perfectly free from SkUfal- 
mttOj it must be a severe penance to find herself 
clogged with me, irho am a perfect novice in that 
art, as in every other.'' 

'^ I prefer singing alone,'' said Gertrude, vain- 
ly trying to conceal her agitation at this insult- 
ing speecbt 

** It is extremely mortifying," said Mr Lynd- 
say, instantly attracting the attention to himself, 
^^ that I am seldom or never asked to sing — ^it is 
difficult to account for this insensibility on the 
part of my friends in particular^ — of the world in 
general ; but I am resolved to remain no longer 
silent under such contumely. Miss St Clair will 
take me under her patronage — ^my wrongs shall 
^bo heard in frill bravura this very night — where 


shall I find words vast enough to express my 
feelings ?^ And be turned over the music, while 
he hummed Guarini^s ^^ Bring me a huodiei 
reeds of decent growth to form a p^>e,^ &c;«^4]ken 
sdectiag the beautfibl arietta— 

lo t'amerd, fin che hoprk di Flora, 
Coi baci i fiori accarezzar el monte 
£ sal mattin la nigia roaa Amon^ 
Vedi molte 6tilk».ft0oiidar le {liant^ 
lo t'amer6j io t'amer^^ io t'amerd ! 

he jdaced it before Miss St Chdr, saying, ^^ Will 
the mistress allow hier prot^^ to choose for li^-^ 
self and him?'' . . 

Gertrude, though in some degree restored to 
self-possession, could only bow her adqiiiesc^ce ; 
but the state of her feelings was su<^, '^as ppre- 
vented her doing justice either to herself or lier 
accompaniment. She was scarcely sensible, df 
• the beauty of his style of dnging. Neither was ft 
then she was struck with the singularity of hav- 
ing lived so long under the same roof, widioi{t 
being aware that he possessed a knowledge^ of 
music which, with most people, would have form- 
ed a prominent feature in their character, and 
which they would long ere then have fo^und an 


QfqKfftttBS^ tif displiyiDg. But Lyndsay did 
nothing for display, and nov his talents were mere- 
fy faroQght out when th^ coold be of;semce to 
aiMther. Gertrude, however, saw nothing of all 
this— she saw nothkig but that Colonel Debnoor 
had dbappear^, upon Mr Lyndsay taking his sta- 
tion by her. The song endedyShehastSyrelinqimli- 
ed her seat to another lady, and it was occupied in 
rotattioit till omiages were announced, and the par- 
ty broke up. Gortrude availed herself of the bustle 
of depaiturev to make her escape to bar own 
chamber ; but as she passed through the suite ef 
apartments, die found Colonel Dehnour in one 
of the most remote, pacing up and down with 
^very mark of disquiet. She would have retreat- 
ed, but quickly advancing, he seized her hand ; 
then, in the same oold ironical manner he had 
hitherto prac&sed, he requested that Miss St 
Clair would honour him so fiir as to endure his 
presaice for a fisw.momoAts. 
. :^^ I know nothing Colonel Delmour can have 
to. say to me,"" answered Gertrude, roused to 
something like indignaticm ; ^^ unless, indeed, to 
apolc^pxe for his behaviour.^ 

." Apologize r repeated he with vehemence.. 


** No, that certainly is not my parpo8e>— sinless 
Mis8 St Clair will first deign to aoconnt fbr 
herd's ; but the thing is impossible ; however I 
might distrust others, I cannot disbeliere the 
evidence of my own senses ^ 

*^ I am ignorant of your meaning ; — I cannot 
listen to such firantic expressions——-^ and she 
sought to withdraw her hand from him. 

^' Frantic ! Yes, I am firantic to seek that 
exphmation firoin you which I have a right to 
demand — and toiU demand firom another quar. 

'^ For mercy'^s sake ! t^ me what is the mean* 
ing of this ?^ cried Gertrude,. in great emotion. 
^^ Why am I subjected to hear such violail^— 
such insulting language^-^and firom you !'' And 
the tears burst firom her eyes. 

Colonel Delmoor gazed upon her for a few 
minutes in silence, then in a. somewhat cahner 
tone, and heaving a deep sigh, he proceeded — 

^' But a few hours ago, and tears firom your 
eyes would have been as blood firom my own 
heart — and even yet, deceived and injured as I 

am ^ he stopped in much agitation; then 

again giving way to his passion — ^' But you 


ask me why you are sulgected to such language ? 
-i— your' own heart might have spared you that 

" I have not deserved this — I will not endure 
it r and Miss St Clair again sought to leave the 

" Then why have / deserved— why must / en- 
dive to be mocked and deluded with hopes you 
never meant to realize ?-^Yes— that cold-blooded 
systematic puritan Lyndsay dares to love you— 
and you ^but he shall answer For this to me.^ 

For a moment Gertrude regarded him with a 
look of the most unfeigned astonishment, which 
only gave way to the deep bhish that dyed her 
cheeks — ^but it was not the blush of shame of con- 
cision, but the glow of indignation, and, with an 
air of offended dignity, she said^- 

" Since you believe me capable, after what 
passed to-day, of loving another, you might well 
treat me as you have done ; but what am I to 
think of one who could, for a single instant, sus- 
pect me of such base — ^such monstrous duplici- 
ty r 

" Gertrude,'' cried Colonel Delmoiir, in great 
agitation, " Gertrude, I am a wretch if you — ^ 


but why those bltishes^-tluit ofm&mfm iit si^t of 
him ?— Why that air of intdligenoe that attenda 
your intercourse, an d Did I not hear you my- 
«eU^ when you withdrew with him to the window, 
ask, with all 4he solicitude of the moiA heart-fek 

interest, what he must think of you ? ^he 1 — 

What would his tbou^ti sigBJ^^ to you if your 
affectiosis were mine ?^ 

Gertrude felt almost despair as she thought of 
the impossibility of clearing herself &om suspi- 
cions, which she was aware there was but too 
much reason to attach to her — ^and she remained 
silent, while Colonel Delmour's eyes were fixed 
upon her with an expression of the most intense 
anxiety. At length, with a deep sigh, she said — 

^' That there exists a mutual cause of embar- 
rassment betwixt Mr Lyndsay and me, I do not 
deny ; but if Is one which involves the interest of 
a third person, and I dare not divulge it even to 
you — thtUf and that only, is the cmise of the con- 
fosioii you witnessed, and of the words you oveN 
heard — More I cannot-— dare not say-— I am 
pledged to silence."" 

^^ By him ?"" demanded Colonel Delmour im- 


^^ No-#<by anothex^— but thai odier I may not 
name.^. ......... 

ColonelJDelmom! still looked dotibtii^lj. 

^^ And how long is this mystenons pokmecdiili 
to continue P"' 

'^ Heaven only knows l^^^bat Aq not«>»-do. jiot 
ask me fartjier.'' 

And as she bent her head dcgectedly forward, 
the string of pearls which hung from her neck at* 
tracted her lover^s eye, and again his wavering 
suspidons were i^oused, as he remembered the con- 
versation repeated by Miss Pratt. 

^^ And these precious baubles T cried he, point- 
ing contemptuously to them — ** Do they form 
part of the mysterious chain which links your 
fate so indissolubly with that of Mr Lyndsay ?" 

^^ I see I am doubted— -disbelieved^-^it is de- 
grading to be thus interrogated rV and with an 
air of displeasure, foreign to her natural charac- 
ter, she rose to quit the room. . 

" Gertrude," cried Colonel Delmour, detaining 
her, " you know not-— you cannot conceive how 
my heart is racked and tortured. — I will — I must 
have my doubts ended one way or other ere we 

VOL. T. B b 


part— perhaps for ever :— tell me thesi^-are not 
these the gift; of that o f Edward Lyndsay P"^ 

" The gift of Edward Lyndsay !"• repeated 
Gertrude, in the utmost amazement. ^^ What 
an idea P and she abnost smiled in scorn. *^ The 
pearls are a present I received not many hours 
since from Lord Rossville— -I thought little of 
them," added she, with a simple tenderness, which 
carried conviction even to Colonel Delmour, "for 
I had just then parted from you." 

** Gertrude, dearest Gertrude, can you forgive 
me ?" and he poured forth the most vehement re- 
proaches on himself, mingled with such expres- 
sions of love towards her as failed not to obtain 
pardon. He related to her what had passed with 
Miss Pratt relative to the pearls, and in so doing 
served a double purpose, by clearing himself from 
the charges that had been brought against him 
by that lady. This trait of her served to show 
Gertrude how little dependence ought to be plac- 
ed on her report, and she felt as though she too 
had been guilty of injustice towards her lover, in 
even listening to her malicious insinuations. 

Though somewhat pained, yet, on the whole, 
she was not displeased at what had passed. Like 


many others, she cherished that fatal mistake- 
that jealousy is the offspring of love, rather than 
the infirmity of temper, and, as such, its excesses 
were easily for^ven. In short, this was a lovers^ 
quarrel— ^^r«^ quarrel too, and, consequently, 
served rather to heighten than diminish the mu- 
tual attachment. 

Delmour was to set off early the following 
morning; and Gertrude, too much agitated to re- 
turn to the company, took leave of him, and 
hastened to her own apartment, to hide her part- 
ing tears. 




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